OSCAR PISTORIUS SETS NEW PB
25th March 2011
Blade Runner Oscar Pistorius' dream of competing at both the Olympic and Paralympic Games at London 2012 has moved a step closer after the South African set a new personal best.
Double amputee Pistorius clocked 45.61 seconds to win the 400metres at the Provincial Championships in Pretoria last night, beneath the 'B' standard qualifying time for the World Championships, which take place in Daegu, South Korea in August and September, and the Olympic Games.
In 2008, the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruled in favour of four-time Paralympic champion Pistorius after a lengthy legal battle with the International Association of Athletics Federations over his carbon fibre prosthetic running blades.
Pistorius was bidding to compete in the Beijing Olympics, but narrowly missed the qualifying time, clocking a best of 46.25secs.
Pistorius lowered that time last season and his new best time is 0.06secs behind the 45.55secs 'A' standard.
The 24-year-old will compete at the BT Paralympic World Cup in Manchester in May and was thrilled with his new best time.
He said: "I am delighted that my new personal best of 45.61 is within the Olympic B qualification and it takes me that step closer to competing in the Olympics as well as the Paralympics in 2012.
"It feels fantastic to have achieved a time that I knew I had in me and have been working towards for some time.
"My main goal in 2011 is to qualify for the able-bodied World Athletics Championships in Daegu and the BT Paralympic World Cup is a very important event in my preparation process.
"There is a year-and-a-half to go to the London Games and I need to put my head down and push for it."
Swimmer Natalie du Toit took part in the 10-kilometre open water event at the Beijing Olympics before winning five Paralympic titles in the pool, while arm amputee table tennis ace Natalia Partyka played in both the Olympic and Paralympic competitions in 2008.