With an effortless ability to succeed, Usain St. Leo Bolt is a 21st-century King Midas, achieving gold time and again, in a way the world has rarely seen. The fastest man in history with a 100m record of 9.58 seconds, the 29-year-old Jamaican is the greatest sprinter of all time. At the 2008 Beijing Olympics he became the first athlete ever to win consecutive gold medals in the 100m and 200m plus the 4X100m relay. But Bolt went from a super-athlete to true legend when he successfully defended all three Olympic titles at London 2012. When he won three more golds at the 2015 World Championships, Bolt became the first man in any discipline to complete a “triple-triple”, making him the most successful athlete in the history of the IAAF athletics world championships.

This year he will attempt what many see as the impossible, when he goes for an unbelievable third trio of golds in Rio. “People say it’s a big pressure, but I don’t look at it that way,” Bolt told Revolution when we caught up with him in New York at the opening of Hublot’s new Fifth Avenue boutique. “I know what I want, and the 2016 Olympics is the biggest thing for me right now. I’m embarking on a journey that’s never been done before. I’m ready to go and I’m excited. I’m always confident – that’s one thing about me, I’m just keen to get the season started, and then everything will flow.”

A Hublot ambassador for the past five years, the brand has chosen to mark Bolt’s sporting achievements with the release of two limited-edition Big Bang Unico Usain Bolt watches – both 45mm, one in black and one in his signature colour: gold. Limited to 250 pieces, the black watch is in polished and satin-treated ceramic, the bezel featuring Hublot’s signature half-dozen H-shaped screws in yellow gold. The skeletonised black dial has a “Lightning Bolt” chronograph hand operated by the automatic HUB1242 Unico in-house movement with 72 hours of power reserve.

The piece de resistance, however, is the watch that Bolt himself wears. Standing at 6’5”, Bolt is one man that can carry off a big, in-your-face timepiece and the Big Bang Unico Usain Bolt Yellow Gold is certainly that. Limited to just 100 examples, the case is in matt yellow gold perfectly contrasted by a black skeletonised dial. The best touch of all though comes through the fabulous metallic gold leather strap – straight out of Studio 54 – embossed with the Jamaican flag. “Yellow gold is hot,” Bolt explains. “Hublot asked me what I wanted from a new watch and I said ‘I want it to pop’ and they said ‘OK, we’re going to make it pop’. And, hey, they definitely made it pop!

“Watches are all about time, and timing is my life. This is what I do – it’s all about the race. As an athlete you have a specific time you have to run and a watch pretty much sums up my entire life. So for me to be a partner with Hublot is just an honour, and the relationship is going on and on. This is my second collaboration with the brand and I’m really excited about it.”

Looking at Bolt, dressed all in black, his Hublot stands out like a beacon, emphasising one of the main reasons Chairman Jean-Claude Biver and CEO Ricardo Guadalupe chose to work with him: his flamboyance and energy have brought track and field to a new audience. “This is what I love about Hublot. They’ve really partnered with a lot of guys and with all of them they’ve really tried to bridge a gap, choosing great communicators and reaching many different walks of life,” Bolt says.

“People are saying that I am responsible for this sport, which is a little bit stressful. But I try to just live my life in a good and positive way – to be a role model. I get a lot of texts and Facebook messages from kids saying that I inspire them, and for me that’s huge. This is why I want to continue with kids when I stop competing – explaining about drug use and what it takes to be a champion. I love track and field and I want to help in any way I can.”

On 14 February 2015, Bolt announced that he intends to retire from athletics after the 2017 World Championships in London, but for now his focus is firmly on this summer’s Olympic Games. Known for deliberately slowing at the end of his races to start his celebrations before crossing the winning line, it is said that without this showmanship Bolt could knock a further .04 of a second off his world record. When the subject is raised he chuckles: “I’ve discussed that for the past two years with my coach, and he says, ‘listen to me, next year if you want to run well you have to cut that out, and it has to start from early in the season’. So I think that this year we’ll be working a lot more on that – avoiding slowing down. One of my biggest goals this year is running the 200m in sub-19 seconds. That’s what I’m aiming for, so let’s see what happens.”

And proving that his new Hublot is the perfect watch for him, Bolt ends our interview with the words: “I want to go out with a real bang. I want to just make this year memorable for everyone. Just like the start, I want to end on a real big bang.”

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