LONDON – Oscar Pistorius failed in his bid to reach the Olympic 400 metres final on Sunday when the South African double-amputee finished last in his semi-final.
Pistorius, who races wearing carbon fibre prosthetic blades after being born without a fibula in both legs, is the first double-amputee to run in the Games and was given a rapturous welcome when he went out on to the track.
The pace was too hot for him, though and, just as at last year’s world championships, he finished last in his race in 46.54 seconds, way down on the 45.44 season’s best he posted in the first round.
Immediately after finishing, heat winner and world champion Kirani James, the 19-year-old Grenadian, swapped his pinned-on name label with Pistorius, who will also run in the 4x400m relay, as the two men embraced.
Luguelin Santos, the 18-year-old junior world champion from the Dominican Republic, made the final while the fastest qualifier was Trinidad & Tobago’s Lalonde Gordon.