Bolt the highest paid athlete in track and field history

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The fastest man in the world signed the fastest track and field contract ever yesterday, with Usain Bolt extending his sponsorship with German apparel company Puma through 2013.

The world-record holder at both the 100 and 200 metres will be tied to the company through the 2012 London Olympics, when he is expected to attempt to retain his gold medals in both sprint events.

"It's good, man. I'm happy. I'm very happy with the figure," Bolt, who turned 24 on Saturday, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview.

Although the terms of the contract were not released, Puma chairman and CEO, Jochen Zeitz, said Bolt would be "the best-paid athlete in track and field history".

"He's an iconic global sports star and, as such, he's now remunerated," Zeitz told the AP.

Bolt became a worldwide superstar at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, winning both the 100 and 200 in world-record times and helping Jamaica win another gold and set another world record in the 4x100 relay. A year later, he again set world records in the 100 and 200 at the World Championships in Berlin.

Although he is sitting out the rest of this season with tightness in his lower back, Bolt is already looking forward to returning to the track next year for the World Champion-ships and eventually the 2012 Olympics.

"I'm trying to make myself a legend," Bolt said. "People are really looking forward to me breaking records (but) I'm going to go run hard to win, that's my aim. And every time I go out there and run hard to win, I get records.

(Source: AP)