His legs were hurting, the rain was pouring and he was trailing late in the race.
Doesn't matter. This is Usain Bolt.
And nothing gets in the way of him and first place, especially when he's driven as he was Sunday night in the 100-meter final at the world championships.
Bolt blew by Justin Gatlin with about 30 meters to go and never glanced back. He also didn't even crack a smile when he crossed the finish line because this took a lot more work than the world's fastest sprinter usually needs.
Gatlin was second and Bolt's Jamaican teammate Nesta Carter took third.
Of all Bolt's titles, this one will have a special meaning, considering he false-started two years ago in the final to lose his crown.
Now, it's his again.
"It's always great to get back your title," said Bolt, who won in 9.77 seconds. "I'm happy with myself I got it done."
Like Bolt, Brittney Reese and Ashton Eaton were just as dominant. Reese won her third straight long jump gold, while Eaton now possesses the world and Olympic decathlon titles.
Many of Bolt's top rivals were missing from the field. Gone were Tyson Gay (doping offense) and Jamaican teammate Yohan Blake, who was the reigning champion but skipped the worlds because of an injured hamstring.
Shortly after the race, Bolt sauntered around the track with his country's flag tied around his neck like a cape. These days, he has to be the Superman of his sport. Given all the recent doping scandals, track needs someone to save the day.
For now, he will settle for blowing away the dark cloud over his proud sprinting nation, which saw some of its most decorated sprinters fall from grace. Asafa Powell, Sherone Simpson and Veronica Campbell-Brown all tested positive for a banned substance and weren't at the worlds.
"I'm just doing my part by running fast, winning titles and letting the world know you can do it clean," Bolt said. "My focus is to continue doing what I do."
And that means running fast times, even on a drenched track.
What started as a steady drizzle turned into a downpour just before the gun sounded. So much so that Bolt clowned around when he was introduced to the crowd, pretending to open an umbrella.
Really, though, rain doesn't bother him. Not in the least.
Neither does anything else, like falling behind early. He knew he might trail Gatlin at the halfway mark, because Bolt has never been a good starter and may have been extra cautious considering what happened in South Korea two years ago.
In the lane next to him, Gatlin got off to a great start and thought he might have enough in the tank to beat Bolt, just as he did two months ago in Rome.
"Then I saw these long legs coming up on my right side," Gatlin said. "He's great. He's just great."
These two aren't exactly the best of friends, but after the race, Gatlin congratulated Bolt, who had some kind words in return.
"For him to say to me, `Hey, you're the guy who pushes me to go even faster.' I'm honored in that," Gatlin said. "But I thought I had it for a second."
Reese makes it a 3-peat
Olympic champion Brittney Reese of the U.S. won her third straight long jump world title Sunday, holding off Blessing Okagbare of Nigeria.
Reese reached the final as last qualifier but jumped 23 feet on her second attempt to beat Okagbare by less than an inch. Okagbare had beaten Reese earlier this season.
Ivana Spanovic took the bronze medal in a Serbian record jump of 22-4 1/2.
Okagbare ran earlier in the day to reach the 100-meter semifinals. She is a medal favorite in that event Monday.
Youngest race walk champ
Aleksandr Ivanov of Russia won gold in the men's 20-kilometre walk Sunday at the world championships, benefiting from the late disqualification of his closest pursuer.
Ivanov finished the race that started and ended in Luzhniki Stadium in 1 hour, 20 minutes, 58 seconds, more than 10 seconds ahead of Olympic gold medallist Chen Ding of China. Miguel Angel Lopez of Spain took bronze.
Canada's Inaki Gomez (1:22:21) was eighth, and Benjamin Thorne (1:24:26) was 20th.
Near the 18-kilometre mark, Erick Barrondo of Guatemala edged ahead of Ivanov, not knowing that he had just received his third yellow card and would be disqualified before he could widen the gap.
That left Ivanov well in front of the others to become the youngest winner of a race walk competition at the world championships.
Most of the race was run on a loop outside the stadium that offered little shade or relief from late-afternoon heat of 29 degrees C (84 degrees F).
The lead changed hands repeatedly, with Takumi Saito of Japan far ahead until the 24th minute, when teammate Yusuke Suzuki overtook him. But Suzuki soon fell to a pursuing pack of Ivanov, Chen, Barrondo and Olympic bronze Wang Zhen of China.
Wang soon pulled far ahead, but was disqualified in the 13 kilometre with a third yellow card.
Olympic champ wins women's discus
Sandra Perkovic of Croatia, the Olympic champion, won the women's discus gold medal Sunday at the world championships, beating Melina Robert-Michon of France.
Yarelys Barrios of Cuba took bronze.
Perkovic threw 67.99 metres to keep her one-year unbeaten streak going. Robert-Michon finished with a French record of 66.28 on her last attempt.
Barrios won a fourth medal in as many world championships with a throw of 64.96.
Ethiopian wins 3rd world title in the women's 10K
Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia won the women's 10,000 metres Sunday at the world championships, making her move with about 500 metres to go and quickly pulling away from the rest of the pack.
Dibaba won in 30 minutes, 43.35 seconds. Gladys Cherono of Kenya took silver and Belaynesh Oljira of Ethiopia won bronze.
Hitomi Niiya of Japan set the pace for much of the race, but Dibaba blew past her just before the bell lap and was never troubled again.
Dibaba, a two-time Olympic champion at the 10,000, won the world title for the third time but first since 2007.