Athletics

Oscar to run at New York GP

2012-05-22 18:11
Oscar Pistorius (File)

New York - South African Oscar Pistorius, trying to become the first double amputee to compete in the Olympics, and reigning 5 000m Olympic women's champion Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia will race in the Diamond League meet here next month, organisers announced on Tuesday.

Pistorius, the 25-year-old "Blade Runner" who uses carbon fibre prosthetic running blades, bettered the Olympics qualifying mark of 45.30 seconds this year with a time of 45.20 at a meet in Pretoria.

He must run 45.25 again at an international event before June 30 to realise his dream of becoming the first amputee to compete against able-bodied athletes at the quadrennial multi-sport showcase.

Pistorius hopes to make it happen at the adidas Grand Prix on June 9.

"Last year at the adidas Grand Prix, I had a great experience on the way to my first World Championships," Pistorius said. "This year, I know the Icahn Stadium fans will put everything they've got behind my quest to compete in the Olympics."

Dibaba, who also won 10 000m Olympic gold at Beijing, is a seven time world champion and the 5 000m world record holder.

But Dibaba, 26, missed all of last year with an injury. She has won her two prior starts this year but needs to impress her homeland's Olympic selectors.

Also competing at the meeting are two-time world indoor champion Abubaker Kaki of Sudan at the 800m and long jumpers Irving Saladino of Panama, Mitchell Watt of Australia and Greg Rutherford of Britain.

Saladino, 29, is the reigning Olympic champion while Watt, 24, was ranked No 1 in the world last year and second at the world championships and Rutherford has the longest leap in the world this year at 8.35m.

Read more on:    oscar pistorius  |  athletics
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