The incredible career of Usain Bolt — ‘The Fastest Man Alive’ who raked in $43.4 million last year

Usain Bolt was born in Jamaica in 1986 and excelled in sprinting — and cricket — from a young age.

At 15, Bolt was already 6 foot and 5 inches tall. He also became the youngest World Junior Track and Field Championships gold medalist ever when he won the 200-metre event in 2002.

Fifteen years later, Bolt added eight Olympic gold medals and 11 World Championship gold medals to his trophy cabinet thanks to his acceleration and extraordinary stride length.

He is now the richest track and field athlete in the world and reportedly raked in $US34.2 million ($AU43.4 million) this year, according to Forbes.

Bolt runs his last ever race at the 4×100 metre relay World Championship final in London on Saturday, having already bowed out from individual racing with a bronze in the 100 metre event last weekend.

He leaves behind a clear legacy, but what did Bolt go through to get to this point in his career?

[slideshow]
[slide
permalink=”/#bolt-was-a-winner-from-a-young-age-in-2002-aged-15-he-became-the-youngest-ever-winner-of-the-200-metre-race-at-the-world-junior-championships-in-athletics-in-kingston-jamaica-1″
title=”Bolt was a winner from a young age. In 2002, aged 15, he became the youngest ever winner of the 200-metre race at the World Junior Championships in Athletics in Kingston, Jamaica.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04e8754334b5976b3b7/image.jpg”
source=”Andy Lyons/Getty Images”
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[slide
permalink=”/#that-same-year-he-won-the-rising-star-award-at-iaaf-athletics-gala-in-monaco-but-wore-a-questionably-fitted-suit-to-the-occasion-2″
title=”That same year, he won the rising star award at IAAF Athletics Gala in Monaco (but wore a questionably-fitted suit to the occasion.)”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04e8754334b5976b3b8/image.jpg”
source=”Michael Steele/Getty Images”
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[slide
permalink=”/#just-two-years-later-bolts-first-olympic-appearance-came-in-athens-in-2004-despite-injuries-riddling-his-previous-season-unfortunately-this-olympic-stint-was-unsuccessful-and-he-didnt-even-make-it-past-the-first-round-3″
title=”Just two years later, Bolt’s first Olympic appearance came in Athens in 2004 despite injuries riddling his previous season. Unfortunately, this Olympic stint was unsuccessful and he didn’t even make it past the first round.”
content=””
image=”http://edge.alluremedia.com.au/uploads/businessinsider/2017/08/Usain-Bolt.jpg”
source=”Michael Steele/Getty Images”
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[slide
permalink=”/#he-left-athens-and-took-part-in-several-other-international-competitions-before-he-returned-to-the-olympic-track-he-set-a-new-world-record-in-the-100-metre-event-at-the-reebok-grand-prix-in-new-york-with-a-time-of-972-seconds-4″
title=”He left Athens and took part in several other international competitions. Before he returned to the Olympic track he set a new world record in the 100-metre event at the Reebok Grand Prix in New York, with a time of 9.72 seconds.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04e8754334b5976b3ba/image.jpg”
source=”Victah Sailer/Getty Images”
caption=””
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[slide
permalink=”/#it-was-second-time-lucky-for-the-athlete-because-in-2008s-beijing-olympics-his-world-record-breaking-sprint-in-the-100-metre-event-secured-him-his-first-olympic-gold-medal-with-a-time-of-969-seconds-he-famously-managed-to-win-the-race-with-his-laces-undone-5″
title=”It was second time lucky for the athlete. Because in 2008’s Beijing Olympics, his world record-breaking sprint in the 100-metre event secured him his first Olympic gold medal, with a time of 9.69 seconds. He famously managed to win the race with his laces undone.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04e8754334b5976b3bb/image.jpg”
source=”Mark Dadswell/Getty Images”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”/#still-in-beijing-bolt-went-on-to-win-another-gold-and-set-another-world-record-in-the-200-metre-event-with-a-time-of-1930-seconds-he-also-claims-he-ate-1000-chicken-nuggets-during-his-time-in-the-city-6″
title=”Still in Beijing, Bolt went on to win another gold and set another world record in the 200-metre event with a time of 19.30 seconds. He also claims he ate 1,000 chicken nuggets during his time in the city.”
content=”Source: Getty / The Independent
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3bc/image.jpg”
source=”Michael Steele/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#unbelievably-he-went-on-to-score-a-hat-trick-leaving-beijing-with-three-gold-medals-in-total-these-were-in-the-100-metre-200-metre-and-4×100-metre-relay-events-7″
title=”Unbelievably, he went on to score a hat-trick, leaving Beijing with three gold medals in total. These were in the 100 metre, 200 metre, and 4×100 metre relay events.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3bd/image.jpg”
source=”Shaun Botterill/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#however-the-relay-gold-was-taken-from-bolt-in-2017-as-his-team-mate-nesta-carter-was-found-guilty-of-doping-after-a-urine-sample-was-retested-using-the-latest-techniques-8″
title=”However, the relay gold was taken from Bolt in 2017 as his team mate Nesta Carter was found guilty of doping after a urine sample was retested using the latest techniques.”
content=”Source: The Telegraph
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3be/image.jpg”
source=”Jamie Squire/Getty Images”
caption=”Bolt with Jamaican team mate Nesta Carter”
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#bolt-shattered-his-own-records-the-very-next-year-at-the-iaaf-championships-in-berlin-with-a-time-of-958-seconds-in-the-100-metre-race-and-1919-seconds-in-the-200-metre-event-9″
title=”Bolt shattered his own records the very next year at the IAAF Championships in Berlin, with a time of 9.58 seconds in the 100-metre race and 19.19 seconds in the 200-metre event.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3bf/image.jpg”
source=”Andy Lyons/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#it-was-his-record-breaking-time-of-958-seconds-that-secured-him-the-title-of-the-fastest-man-alive-he-won-three-gold-medals-in-the-same-tournament-10″
title=”It was his record-breaking time of 9.58 seconds that secured him the title of ‘The Fastest Man Alive.’ He won three gold medals in the same tournament.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3c0/image.jpg”
source=”Mark Dadswell/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#bolt-gained-legendary-status-even-if-he-was-uneasy-adopting-the-title-himself-telling-the-new-york-times-in-2009-i-dont-think-two-seasons-can-do-it-i-think-i-have-to-keep-doing-this-year-after-year-11″
title=”Bolt gained legendary status, even if he was uneasy adopting the title himself, telling The New York Times in 2009: ‘I don’t think two seasons can do it… I think I have to keep doing this year after year.'”
content=”Source: The New York Times
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e04f8754334b5976b3c1/image.jpg”
source=”Ian Walton/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#aside-from-his-success-on-the-track-his-personality-has-led-to-a-string-of-highly-lucrative-endorsement-deals-which-have-seen-him-become-the-highest-earning-track-star-for-the-past-few-years-12″
title=”Aside from his success on the track his personality has led to a string of highly lucrative endorsement deals which have seen him become the highest-earning track star for the past few years.”
content=”

Just a kid from Jamaica #OaksDay ????

A post shared by Usain St.Leo Bolt (@usainbolt) on

Source: Forbes
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[slide
permalink=”/#after-the-beijing-olympics-bolt-picked-up-some-big-sponsorship-deals-including-hublot-virgin-media-and-gatorade-who-even-made-him-his-own-flavour-gatorade-bolt-13″
title=”After the Beijing Olympics Bolt picked up some big sponsorship deals including Hublot, Virgin Media, and Gatorade who even made him his own flavour ‘Gatorade Bolt.'”
content=”Source: Forbes
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c2/image.jpg”
source=”YouTube/VirginMediaBB2012″
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#bolts-biggest-deal-with-german-brand-puma-has-been-re-signed-multiple-times-but-the-latest-contract-will-see-him-with-the-brand-through-to-2025-and-will-bring-him-10-million-a-year-14″
title=”Bolt’s biggest deal with German brand Puma has been re-signed multiple times but the latest contract will see him with the brand through to 2025 and will bring him $10 million a year.”
content=”Source: Forbes
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c3/image.jpg”
source=”Rob Kim/Getty Images for Puma”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#in-2010-bolts-winning-streak-was-finally-broken-when-american-sprinter-tyson-gay-beat-him-in-the-100-metre-final-in-the-diamond-league-in-stockholm-15″
title=”In 2010, Bolt’s winning streak was finally broken when American sprinter Tyson Gay beat him in the 100-metre final in the Diamond League in Stockholm.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c4/image.jpg”
source=”Michael Steele/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
]
[slide
permalink=”/#but-during-the-2012-games-in-london-he-was-back-on-form-he-became-the-first-athlete-ever-to-retain-the-olympic-100-metre-and-200-metre-olympic-titles-his-jamaican-team-also-broke-the-record-for-the-4×100-metre-relay-with-a-time-of-3684-seconds-16″
title=”But during the 2012 Games in London, he was back on form. He became the first athlete ever to retain the Olympic 100-metre and 200-metre Olympic titles. His Jamaican team also broke the record for the 4×100 metre relay with a time of 36.84 seconds.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c5/image.jpg”
source=”Cameron Spencer/Getty Images”
caption=””
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[slide
permalink=”/#eight-years-after-his-first-olympic-appearance-bolts-winning-ways-continued-at-the-rio-de-janiero-games-in-2016-the-jamaican-defended-his-100-metre-200-metre-and-4×100-metre-relay-titles-making-him-the-first-athlete-ever-to-attain-the-triple-triple-three-gold-medals-in-the-100-200-and-4×100-metre-races-at-three-consecutive-olympic-games-17″
title=”Eight years after his first Olympic appearance, Bolt’s winning ways continued at the Rio de Janiero Games in 2016. The Jamaican defended his 100-metre, 200-metre, and 4×100 metre relay titles, making him the first athlete ever to attain the ‘triple-triple’ — three gold medals in the 100, 200, and 4×100-metre races at three consecutive Olympic Games.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://edge.alluremedia.com.au/uploads/businessinsider/2016/08/usain_bolt_smiling_getty1.jpg”
source=”Getty Images”
caption=””
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]
[slide
permalink=”/#bolt-ran-his-final-individual-race-on-august-5-at-the-world-championships-100-metre-final-in-london-he-finished-3rd-behind-christian-coleman-and-gold-medalist-justin-gatlin-18″
title=”Bolt ran his final individual race on August 5 at the World Championships 100-metre final in London. He finished 3rd, behind Christian Coleman and gold medalist Justin Gatlin.”
content=”Source: Getty
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c6/image.jpg”
source=”Richard Heathcote/Getty Images”
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[slide
permalink=”/#despite-not-winning-his-final-race-bolt-will-always-be-remembered-as-the-greatest-sprinter-of-his-generation-and-still-holds-multiple-records-which-dont-look-like-they-will-be-broken-anytime-soon-19″
title=”Despite not winning his final race, Bolt will always be remembered as the greatest sprinter of his generation and still holds multiple records which don’t look like they will be broken anytime soon.”
content=””
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5989e0508754334b5976b3c7/image.jpg”
source=”Michael Steele/Getty Images”
caption=””
credit_href=””
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[slide
permalink=”/#now-it-looks-likely-bolt-could-become-a-movie-star-with-his-sights-set-on-hollywood-you-never-know-i-might-go-into-acting-and-do-some-action-movies-bolt-said-when-discussing-his-options-once-he-hangs-up-his-running-spikes-20″
title=”Now it looks likely Bolt could become a movie star, with his sights set on Hollywood. ‘You never know. I might go into acting and do some action movies,’ Bolt said when discussing his options once he hangs up his running spikes.”
content=”Source: Business Insider
image=”http://static.businessinsider.com/image/5981ccc28754330a5242abe7/image.jpg”
source=”Stu Forster / Getty Images”
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]
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