World 100m record holder Tim Montgomery says he will shatter his own record this summer - and take sprinting into a new era.
Montgomery broke arch-rival Maurice Greene’s old mark of 9.79 seconds when he went one hundredth of a second faster at the Grand Prix final in Paris last September.
Now, despite being without a coach, and with his girlfriend Marion Jones due to give birth to their first child next month, he is ready to lower the mark still further.
“I know for a fact that I could run better than 9.75 secs,” said Montgomery.
“I really believe in myself that I can take it to a new level. I know that I can really challenge the world record again this year.”
Montgomery was involved in a public slanging match with Greene at last weekend’s US Trials in Palo Alto, and he remains in unapologetic mood.
“I respect what Maurice Greene does on the track, but respect off the track is a little different,” he said.
"There comes a time when you have to give an athlete credit, and if he’s not prepared to give me credit, I’ll go out there and I’ll take my credit from him.
"From 1997 to 2000, I thought Maurice was the man to beat. But back then I was training three times a week, not using the weights room, had no kind of race strategy. This is why he beat me.
Montgomery failed to find his best at the US Trials
"When I had a race strategy, did some weights and had a little coaching, Maurice started coming back to me.
“What he was doing he was doing because everything in his life was going well. Now I’ve started putting my stuff together, it’s getting harder for Maurice to be who he used to be.”
Montgomery comes up against Britain’s Dwain Chambers and Mark Lewis-Francis at the Norwich Union International in Glasgow this Sunday.
Earlier this year Chambers claimed he would run 9.65 secs this season - but Montgomery is far from convinced.
“It’s possible for anyone,” he said. "But you would have to run 6.26 secs for the first 60m. It’s not impossible - as long as you put God first, anything can happen.
“9.78 secs had never been done before, and most people said it was impossible for me to do it, but I did it. But for Dwain to do it, with the muscle mass he has - it would be incredibly fast. It would be a sight to see.”
Montgomery confirmed that he would announce details of his new coach in the next few days.
Greene’s coach John Smith, Donovan Bailey’s old mentor Dan Pfaff and Tom Tellez, former coach to Carl Lewis, are all believed to be on his list.
“Me and Marion will decide on the same person,” he said. "This coach will have to take me through the rest of my career. I need someone who will move me forward.
"My running has been good, but I ran 9.96secs aged 19. In 1998, I went under 10 seconds eight times.
"My winter was all chopped up. The plan was shaken up by all the commotion that was going on with my coach, and that shakes your running up as well.
"I thought about taking the whole year off. But then Marion said, ‘I don’t think both of us can take the whole year off and sit at home.’ Not being out there, we’d drive each other crazy.
“She told me to go out there every day, do what you have to do, and this year will be alright. And my races this year are better than they have been in previous years.”