'Bladerunner' Pistorius Shatters Personal Record

'Bladerunner' Oscar Pistorius headed to world championships
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 20, 2011 10:56 AM CDT
In this photo released by Nuova Atletica dal Friuli, South African runner Oscar Pistorius on his way to qualify for the track and field world championships, in Lignano, Italy, Tuesday, July 19, 2011.   (Carmelo Imbesi)
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(Newser) – Double amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius achieved a career goal by qualifying for the world championships yesterday, fulfilling a five-year-long quest to compete at the highest level against able-bodied athletes. Pistorius said his achievement still felt "weird" and "surreal" and hadn't sunk in yet; he clocked 45.07 seconds last night in his final 400-meter race before the qualifying cutoff, having never run faster than 45.61 before.

His sensational performance—in his last chance to go inside the 45.25 qualifying time—earned him a place at next month's worlds in Daegu, South Korea, and also put him inside the "A" standard for the London Olympics. He has to run the "A" standard twice next season ahead of the London Games to meet the South African Olympic Committee's automatic selection criteria. Less than 24 hours after his "highest career moment," the man nicknamed "Bladerunner" was already on his way to his training camp in Gemona, in northern Italy, to continue working.

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