Oscar: London 2012 next

2008-09-17 11:02
Oscar Pistorius eyes 2012 Olympics

Beijing - Oscar "Blade Runner" Pistorius, fresh from winning triple gold at the Paralympic Games, has set his sights on still more track glory with the 2012 Olympics top of his list.

The 21-year-old sprint sensation, who took the 400m gold medal on Tuesday to add to his earlier wins in the 100m and 200m, is determined to run on the big stage in London after missing out on the Beijing Olympics.

"My priority is to get focused for the coming years. You've got to think about the longest-term goals in life in order to prepare and to get ready for them," the South African said on Wednesday.

"London 2012 is obviously the next big one and we'll use next year as a base year."

Nicknamed after the carbon fibre blades that have replaced his lower legs, the double amputee won a court battle to take part in the Olympics in Beijing but failed to qualify, blaming in part the distraction of his court battle.

"Although I missed it this time by a fraction of a second, it's something that I'm definitely working towards," he said.

"I've got a great team that believes in me, and my coach has been awesome, my trainers at home have been great and my friends and family are very supportive of my dream. So I'm sure it will be something that will happen."

Pistorius did not have the ideal start to these Paralympic Games, being involved in a spat with South Africa's sporting chiefs over a number of issues, including the late arrival of the team's kit in China and travel arrangements to Beijing.

But the man with the reputation as being the "fastest thing on no legs" defended his 200m gold from Athens 2004 as well as taking the 100m gold and breaking the world record in the 400m.

Not content to rest on his laurels, he is already looking forward to starting training in November and to a busy programme of able-bodied and Paralympic events next season.

Among his many aims, Pistorius is targeting the gold medal in the South African National Championships in the 400m, having grabbed silver in 2007.

He will focus on the 200m and 400m races in Paralympic events and the 400m - which he sees as his strongest event - in able-bodied meetings.

Pistorius has been a huge star in Beijing but the South African, who had both of his legs amputated as a baby due to a congenital disorder, is determined not to let fame and glory go to his head.

"As athletes, as long as you keep your focus on the track and you're performing on the track, everything else that comes with it is a bonus," he said.

"I must keep my head down, on the track and in the gym, and I'm very lucky that I have people around me to remind me of that."


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