The anecdote has gone down in history as one of the founding myths of athletics. As athletics crowns a new king, a gangly sprinter from humble beginnings explodes onto the scene in Beijing, shattering three world records. Usain Bolt was destined to control the sport because he possessed the ideal combination of qualities: speed, swagger, and an unmistakably outstanding surname.

However, little is known about the mindset that has led to his unstoppable winning streak. Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan, Michael Phelps, and Serena Williams are just a few of the legendary athletes who have dominated their respective sports with unwavering zeal. Bolt, on the other hand, was having a blast clowning around on the starting line. How could the sport’s jester maintain a mental edge in contests that lasted only a few seconds for nine years?

How could he maintain such composure while his legacy seemed to be on the verge of collapsing? What was it in his mindset that drove him to such incredible heights? The genesis myth, on the other hand, is just that. Bolt’s Olympic record isn’t the sparkling list of perfection that it is sometimes depicted as — nine events, nine victories.

One race in particular blemished the record book, and it occurred at the outset of a trip that would forever change athletics and sport. Bolt not only made a mockery of the Olympics’ marquee event when he beat his chest in joy and eased into a jog as he approached the finish line of the 100m final in Beijing, but he also ripped up the sprint manual for good.