Should 'Blade Runner' -- the Controversial Double Amputee Oscar Pistorius, be Allowed to Run in the Olympics? | Bob's Blitz

Should 'Blade Runner' -- the Controversial Double Amputee Oscar Pistorius, be Allowed to Run in the Olympics?

Oscar Pistorius was born without fibulas (the calf bone) and, at age 11, the future Paralympian had both legs amputated from the knees down. After a rugby injury to his knee, he turned to running with the Flex-Foot Cheetah -- A J shaped device that takes the place of his legs from the knee down.

In 2007 the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) changed its competition rules to ban the use of "any technical device that incorporates springs, wheels or any other element that provides a user with an advantage over another athlete not using such a device." Oscar was thus banned from the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing.

The IAAF's decision was reversed by the Court of Arbitration for Sport in May of 2008: It ruled that there was no evidence that Pistorius had any advantage over his 2 legged competitors. The 'Blade Runner' later ran a 46.25 in the 400 meters in Lucerne, Switzerland, in July of 2008; however, this was short of the Olympic qualification time necessary of 45.55 seconds.

4 years later and "the fastest man on no legs" is back at it. Only this time, he needs to nail a 45.30 to make the 2012 London Games. He'll get that chance Saturday on Randall’s Island. “Ultimately, I’m in very good shape, feeling quite strong,’’ Pistorius told The NY Post. “I’m pretty sure it’ll be quick in New York. We’ve got a second chance.’

The Post adds:

Several of his competitors have chafed at his use of modern technology. Reigning Olympic 400 champ LaShawn Merritt — who served a 21-month ban from racing for a positive steroid test — has voiced concerns over prosthetic limbs and the use of technology, saying, “I just hope the federation keeps track of what is happening with him just so it is fair.”

“There’s always going to be a small percentage of people who don’t [respect me]. Before we did the test, it was harder for me. No test had ever been done on a prosthetic leg. After we’d done the test, I had a leg to stand on,” Pistorius said, chuckling at his own pun.

“You’re always going to find somebody to argue the facts, whether for advantage or just to debate the point for attention. It’s kind of tiring,’’ he said.
Last year, Michael Low of KTLA sports profiled the inspirational athlete.



Running events are the main sports at the Summer Olympics that this type of controversy can really attach itself to. Until a one armed man wants to compete in judo, that is.

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