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Thursday, September 21, 2000
PROFILE: Donovan Bailey
Bailey feels run down

Flu bug could force Canada's medal hopeful to drop out


By RYAN PYETTE -- Winnipeg Sun

 SYDNEY -- Donovan Bailey walked around the track twice. Slowly.

 Even that small effort made him sick, so he went inside to see the doctor.

 A little later, he came back out, and ran a few wind sprints.

 And that was it.

 NOT NORMAL

 That is not the normal training schedule of someone seeking to be the world's fastest man. That is the training schedule of a 90-year-old man at the Y.

 Bailey coughed twice. He looked like he wanted, and needed, more sleep.

 "I feel tired," said the defending Olympic 100-metre dash champ. "I caught some sort of flu, a lot of the athletes have, and I've been in bed for the past two days with IVs stuck in my arm.

 "It's the first time I trained in three days."

 He looked like he lost some weight. He was almost swimming in his grey track suit.

 "With a virus like this, there's not a lot you can do," said Bailey. "All I'm thinking about is getting healthy. We'll have to wait and see if I run.

 "But I'll probably wait until the last minute to decide.

 "If I feel the way I did today, I wouldn't bother."

 This is not good news for Canada.

 Medal hopefuls have been dropping every day. Suddenly, one of the country's better chances in one of the biggest events is threatening to drop out before he hits the starting blocks.

 Bailey is really up against it now.

 He can't take any flu medication because it'll show up on a urine test. He'll get busted for it.

 But while he remains sick, he can't train properly. The long comeback from the torn Achilles has hit a snag.

 "I have no emotions about it, there's nothing I can do," said the 32-year-old sprinter. "The Achilles thing, that was good enough.

 "I don't need anything else."

 Someone suggested this might be a ploy to make a runner like Mo Green feel overconfident.

 He tried to laugh.

 "I don't think I'd spend two days with an IV in my arm if I was trying to do a psyche job on someone," said Bailey, smiling weakly.

 This has been a pretty lousy Games for Canada so far. Very little besides Simon Whitfield has gone right.

 ALL HAD HIGH HOPES

 "You look at (triathlon's Carol) Montgomery, (cyclist Tanya) Dubnicoff, and Joanne (Malar), they all had high hopes for medals and it didn't happen," said Bailey. "Definitely, it's a motivator for us to get up and compete."

 Of course, you have to be able to get out of bed first.

 Bailey turned and walked away. Slowly.

 When you're trying to be the world's fastest man again, that's not a good sign.
Donovan Bailey in the news
Bailey able to pub crawl
Bailey still weak after five days of rest
Canadians are relay hurting
Bailey in pictures
Out in Sydney
Hugging Maurice Greene
First heat okay
Sydney workout
All smiles
Hugging dad
Making a funny face
Tying his shoes
Working out
As a SUNshine Boy