It was Gatlin's first 100-meter world championship title since 2005 and Bolt's first loss in a 100 final in more than four years, when he was defeated by Gatlin in June 2013 in a race in Rome, Italy.
The sprint superstar was left disappointed in the concluding chapter of his individual career a week ago, forced to settle for bronze as the controversial Justin Gatlin took gold in the 100m.
After a short while, though, he rose gingerly to his feet and limped across the line to huge cheers from the 56,000 crowd. Starved of oxygen and their legs burning from lactic acid build-up, every athlete must then complete an 800m media lap that takes them through the clutches of broadcasters, journalists and occasionally the odd stray volunteer who wants a cheeky photo (me included).
Great Britain's women will expect to qualify for the 4x100m relay final, with favourites the U.S. and Jamaica also hoping to avoid any mistakes in the qualifying heats. He is an enigma who starts and ends a race in an unusual electrifying fashion.
On Saturday, it felt surreal to anyone who's been at one of these Bolt victories before. The IAAF World Championships are the coronation of Bolt's career, he planned to retire after the competition. The Jamaican finished behind Gatlin in a Diamond League fixture in 2013 when Bolt was coming off an injury.
Running the last leg, Bolt eased home, looking over his shoulder, as Jamaica won the second of the two semi-final heats in 37.95 seconds, ahead of France (38.03) and China (38.20).
It's a disappointing ending expected to be the final race for the greatest sprinter ever, which - nooooooooooo don't leave us Usain.
It will probably be some time before we see the likes of Farah and Bolt again on the worldwide stage. "They executed and ran well for a young team", Bolt said.
According to BBC News, Usain Bolt's shock defeat was attributed to a poor start, his reaction time was the slowest among the runners.
That said, it's noteworthy that resounding jeers greeted Gatlin when he was introduced for this race.
The new champion spent much of his post-race news conference insisting he'd learned to tune out the booing that has followed him the last few years and explaining that he's not that bad a guy. You never know the end.
Bolt, meanwhile, was insistent that neither Gatlin's win nor his own loss were disasters for track.
"It doesn't change anything", Bolt said. "At the turn I wasn't in contention really, so to get a medal from there is a great achievement".