Michael Johnson answers your questions
Earlier in the week, I opened the floor to questions for the sprinting/summarising legend that is Michael Johnson.
Rather splendid they were too - so without futher blather or prittle-prattle, here are his answers to the best of the bunch.
(If your question made the cut, hats off. If it didn't, don't take it personally; MJ's a busy man. Format should be self-explanatory - name and question of user first, Michael's chat second and any 'TF' subsidiary questions from you've-worked-it-out.)
ojones88 asked: If you could compile an all-time 200m race, who would feature in it?
"I would put myself in it, Usain Bolt, Tommie Smith - 1968 Olympic gold medallist - John Carlos, the silver medallist in that race, Carl Lewis, Calvin Smith - 1983 world champion - and Frankie Fredericks."
TF: Which lane would you want, and which athlete in the lane outside you?
"Lane five, and it wouldn't matter."
TF: The 1-2-3?
"I'm only concerned with the one - and that would be me."
TheresOnlyOneK-Dee asked: Is Usain Bolt the greatest sprinter you have ever seen? If not, who is?
"I can't say he's the greatest sprinter I've ever seen, but I can say his 100m in Beijing was the greatest performance I've ever seen, no doubt about it. For him to be the greatest, he'll have to win gold at another Olympics or a World Championship, show some consistency and longevity. But there's no reason for me to think he can't do."
TF: Greatest sprinter ever?
"Jesse Owens. The significance of what he did we all know about; what not everyone knows is that, just on one day at a collegiate meeting, he broke four world records and tied another one, all in the space of 45 minutes. No-one else could do that."
FalmouthWanderer asked: Do you think its possible for Usain Bolt (or someone else) to run under 19.00 in the 200m?
"It's definitely possible. I could have run under 18 seconds. Could Usain? You'd think he probably could."
TF: How could you have run under 18?
"I wouldn't have needed more training, but I would have needed more competition. I ran 18.5 secs on a 4x200m relay as a collegiate athlete, and the race when I ran 19.32 secs was not the perfect race.
"There were a couple of things I could have improved on - I stumbled out of the blocks and that cost me time, and I strained my left hamstring at the end which cost me time. Correcting those two would maybe get me a tenth of a second total, so I would have needed more on top."
Toon_Luigi asked: Do you think Usain Bolt will break your 400m world record?
"I think he can, but I think it's a lot more difficult than he thinks it probably would be. It's all come very easily to him in the 100m and 200m. It's not that he hasn't worked hard - he has - but he's only been in the sport a few years, and he's already broken the 100m and 200m word records.
"When I broke the 400m record, I'd run 43.39 and the record was 43.29. It took me four more years to move from 43.39 to break the record. Same with the 200m - I was within seven hundredths of a second of it in 1992, but it took me another four years in 1996 to break it.
"The 400m is also much more of a strategic race, as well as having to learn how to train for it and then do that tough training."
Wellly asked: What do you think is the fastest maximum speed you've ever reached is and how would it compare to Bolt's?
"I don't get too caught up in the whole comparisons thing. It's great for message-boards but it's not for me. It's Usain's time now - he's the Olympic gold medallist and the fastest man in the world; I was, but I've moved onto other things. I think my fastest was 23 point something miles per hour, but I'm not sure exactly."
ukathleticscoach asked: There is a big debate on another athletics board. If Bolt and Bekele raced over 600m, who would cross the line first?
"Usain Bolt, hands down. Bekele is a completely different sportsman. 600m is by far not even the middle point between them. There's no fair distance between them - it's like saying let's try to find a sport that a tennis player could compete against a footballer in."
preacherandy asked: In the 1992 Olympics you were hot favourite for the 200m title and yet through illness it all went wrong. How did you deal with that disappointment?
"That was my first opportunity to win an Olympic medal, so it was a huge disappointment. I dealt with it by being realistic. There's was nothing I could do about the illness, so I acknowledged that.
"It also didn't mean that I wasn't still the best in the world - none of the guys who won medals had beaten me before. That was the only race I'd lost in three years, so I kept telling myself, and then set myself some new goals and focused on them."
kingkenny07 asked: If you had decided to pursue your career running 100m, what sort of times do you think you could have run?
"I ran 10.08 secs for the 100m having never trained for it, so I think I could have run about 9.9 secs - which wouldn't have been fast enough any medals - if I had really committed myself to it."
Dalgrush asked: Growing up you must have tried all sort of athletics events. What was your best field event and what was your PB?
"My best field event was the long jump, and my PB was about 21 feet, which I jumped in high school. But I really didn't enjoy it - I only did it to try it. I always wanted to be a sprinter."
N0apc1000 asked: When you were in your prime how many hours a day did you train?
"There's a complete difference between training for a specific event and goal and just training. Now I just work out to be fit. There's no objective at this point. You guys call it training, but that's not training - it's working out.
"As an athlete I'd average four hours a day. It doesn't sound like a lot when some people say they're training for 10 hours, but theirs includes lunch, massage and breaks. My four hours was packed with work. Weights in the morning, track in the afternoon. When I was finished there was nothing else I could do."
TF: Ever go near a running track any more?
"Sometimes, but just to do the sort of thing I would do on a treadmill or on the roads - just running, not sprinting."
FutureTrackKing asked: Did you ever wish you had a serious rival in the 400m to push you like the rivalry shared between Jeremy Wariner and Lashawn Merritt over the past few seasons?
"Rivalries don't necessarily mean races being close at major championships. I had a rivalry with Butch Reynolds for many years. I won all the races, but Butch was the world record holder before I came into the sport, he was extremely talented and he was the only other man running 43 seconds.
"I had to be ready for him, knowing that if I didn't execute properly, he would beat me. Same with Quincy Watts. So those rivalries pushed me to the performances I did do."
brianuk67 asked: Given that you set a tremendous world record at 400m, had great endurance and certainly did not give the appearance of ever staggering over the line in any 400m race I can remember, were you ever tempted to do an Alberto Juantorena and have a crack at 800m at any time?
"No. I guess it's a compliment that despite me being the best in the world at two events and breaking world records, they want me to do another event as well?
"It's just impossible to add another one. On one hand it's flattering; on the other it's like, two events isn't enough? I dominated at 200m and 400m, and now I'm being asked about 100m and 800m?"
kinglts1 asked: How fast can you run the 200m and 400m now?
"It doesn't matter now! But if I went out right now, I'd run about 48 seconds for the 400m. 200m? 21 seconds."
pelepedro asked: After your many great victories on the track how did you like to celebrate? Did you like to party or would you savour victory over a nice cup of tea?
"No specific pattern. Usually at major championships my family - parents, brothers, sisters - would be there, so we'd celebrate with dinner."
robintdh asked: Who would you like to star in a movie about you and would you want to coach the actor how to run like you?
"Hmmm. Not sure who I'd want to star as me. But it would be easy to coach someone to look a certain way, much easier than to coach them to run fast times."