A man was arrested and is being held in custody on Monday (Aug. 6) in London, charged with throwing a beer bottle before Sunday’s men’s 100-meter final. Meanwhile Usain Bolt – a possible intended target of the bottle – was voicing his frustration over Olympics security shortcomings.
Commenting on the arrest, London organizing committee chairman Sebastian Coe says there is a “zero tolerance” policy for such behavior.
“Throwing a bottle on to the field of play is unacceptable,” he tells the AP. “It’s not just unacceptable at an Olympics Games but at any sporting event and anybody who does that will be removed.”
As the 100-meter competitors crouched at the starting line Sunday, a bottle could be seen on television sailing from the first few rows at Olympic Stadium. Although it bounced harmlessly, several feet behind the runners in the vicinity of the lanes of Bolt and Yohan Blake, none of the competitors seemed to notice as the race began normally just seconds later.
According to reports from SF Gate, the thrower (whose name is not being released by authorities) was quickly taken into custody, but not before neighboring fans like Dutch judoka medalist Edith Bosch “beat” him up a bit.
Despite the ruckus, Bolt went on to pull away from the pack with his trademark long strides and win the gold medal running the second-fastest 100m in history.
“It means a lot, because a lot of people were doubting me. A lot of people were saying I wasn’t going to win, I didn’t look good. There was a lot of talk,” Bolt tells CBS News. “It’s an even greater feeling to come out here and defend my title and show the world I’m still number one.”
Bolt had a harder time sprinting through security, however. Even an athlete of his caliber needs to submit to London’s rigid regulations, and as Bolt entered the stadium for his gold-winning run, he was delayed and had the skipping ropes he uses for warm-ups taken away.
“They said I can’t bring it in, and I asked, ‘Why?'” Bolt tells the Christian Science Monitor. “They just said, ‘It is the rules.’ So if I have a rubber band that I need to stretch, I can’t take it in. And when I asked why, they say, ‘It’s just the rules.'”
“I was in the line, we were waiting to run and the guy was telling me to line up straight,” Bolt says on Monday, explaining that standing straight in line for an extended period of time isn’t helpful moments before you’re expected to limber up your body for an event. “I was like, ‘Really? We’re about to run and they are going to make me stand in a straight line?’ There are just some weird rules here.”