(CNN) — Usain Bolt may have lost one of his Olympic gold medals after compatriot Nesta Carter tested positive for a banned substance — but the Jamaican says he has “no hard feelings” towards his sprint relay teammate.
Carter, 31, has appealed to the Court of Arbitration for Sport against the decision to strip him and the Jamaican team of their 2008 Olympic 4×100 meter relay gold and is awaiting a hearing.
But, as it stands, Bolt can no longer claim to have completed the ‘triple triple’ of nine successive Olympic gold sprint medals.
Olympic great Bolt, an athlete who once said returning one of his gold medals would be “heartbreaking,” is philosophical about the matter.
Admitting he has yet to speak to Carter, the 30-year-old Bolt — the 100m and 200m world record holder — told CNN: “It’s just one of those things that happens in life.
“Until I see him I can’t really say he did it on purpose or it was a mistake or I should be angry. Until I actually sit down and look at him face-to-face and talk to him, (I) don’t know how I’m going to react.”
‘I’ve done my part — I’ve won three times’
In January, the International Olympic Committee announced it had disqualified Carter after a reanalysis of the sprinter’s urine and blood samples from Beijing resulted in a positive test for the prohibited substance methylhexaneamine.
At last summer’s Rio Olympics, Bolt cemented his status as an all-time great by becoming the only man to win all three sprint events at three Olympic Games — but the decision to punish the Caribbean island’s relay team now leaves him with eight Olympic golds.
The loss of his 2008 sprint relay gold had not, said Bolt, changed his mind about retiring at the end of this season.
“If it had come before the Olympics, maybe it would have taken a little bit away from me and I would have thought about it,” he said of competing at Tokyo 2020.
“But the fact that I got the chance to say ‘the triple triple,’ it kind of made me feel good.”
Key to Bolt’s retirement decision was just how much has been involved in preparing for major races and events.
“To do four more years of this, it’s tough. It’s not easy to motivate yourself year after year. I’ve accomplished all I’ve wanted to so it would be very hard to motivate myself.”
He also remains phlegmatic about about losing more relay golds.
“When it comes to individual gold medals, I’ve done my part. I’ve won three times. If I lose all of my relay gold medals, for me, I did what I had to do with my personal goals and that’s what counts for me.
“I did the work. My team came through and they helped, but if something goes wrong and I lose my relay medals, it’s just one of those things.”
Playing football and traveling the world
Bolt, who is set to retire from the sport after this summer’s World Championships in London, said he was looking forward to traveling the world after hanging up his spikes and watching sporting events he had been unable to attend because of his training schedule.
“There have been NBA games that I would love to go courtside to watch,” Bolt said. “There have been so many things that I wanted to travel or to go and see. I haven’t had a chance to see Formula One ever and that’s something that I’ve always (wanted to do).
“These are the things I look forward to when I can travel and want to see big events, sporting events.”
The Manchester United fan also said plans were “in the pipeline” for him to train with Bundesliga side Borussia Dortmund once the athletics season concluded.
If that plan comes to fruition, Bolt might be called upon for one final sprint test — against Dortmund’s very own speedster Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
In November, the Gabon international threw down the gauntlet to Bolt.
“I’m waiting for you man,” Aubameyang exclusively told CNN, challenging the nine-time Olympic gold medalist to a 30m showdown. “I hope to see you one day, and let’s do this challenge!”