Kingston, Jamaica – Monday, June 12, 2017: Though tears from proud spectators flowed freely in the stands, Bolt’s final home run ended on a high with everything from fireworks and high-energy dancing, to a special kiss for his girlfriend at trackside and even a quick stint on the microphone with Ding Dong and the Ravers.
The second staging of the Racers Grand Prix, which was dubbed ‘Salute to a Legend’ in honour of Usain Bolt’s last race in Jamaica, came to a close with energetic performances by Digicel brand ambassadors, Tifa and I-Octane, as well as Beenie Man and dancing phenom, Ding Dong and the Ravers Clavers. Miss Kitty and veteran sports commentator, Oral Tracey took the reins as emcees for the show, keeping spectators in stitches from start to finish.
“Me wish him never have to retire!” exclaimed Joy Brown, a patron at the event, who was overcome with tears. “Me can’t even imagine racing without Usain Bolt in deh again. Me feel it hard when me think seh the next Olympics me nah go feel me heart climb up inna me throat when Bolt a run lef’ the other man dem. But me glad fi him and me a look forward to see the next set of runner weh ago tek Jamaica to the world like how him do it.”
“I’ve never been so proud to be a Jamaican,” said Donovan McIntosh, a Jamaican living in New York, who came back to Jamaica just to be part of the historic event. “I’ve been watching Bolt run since he was a skinny kid from the country and it’s just amazing to see how much he’s grown and accomplished and done for the country in his career. I’m truly proud of him and wish him well in the rest of his endeavours.”
The after-show, which was hosted by Digicel, Wray and Nephew and Wata, ran on high momentum from start to finish, with patrons getting an extra special treat when Usain Bolt joined in on the dancing with Ding Dong and the Ravers Clavers—even taking the mic for a verse of Ding Dong’s popular hit, Holiday. The Gas hit-maker later took to Instagram to share how proud he was to perform alongside Usain Bolt at the historic event, noting that it was also a big night for Dancehall.
“This was truly an epic celebration of Usain’s life and work,” said Andrew Brown, Sponsorship Manager at Digicel Jamaica. “We couldn’t have done anything less than this to send off our Chief Speed Officer and he truly deserved every moment. We’re especially happy that so many of our customers were able to come out and be part of it—not a seat was left unoccupied in the stadium and that’s just a testament to the kind of love Jamaica has for Usain. We are so proud of him.”
Before retiring his golden spikes for good, the legendary sprinter is expected to do his final race at the World Championships in London this August.