On top for the best part of ten years. A lifetime of breaking down barriers, fighting to put right what once went wrong. (Ok so the last one was Quantum Leap) I’m talking about Paralympic poster boy Oscar Pistorius. Last night he lost, and then promptly lost it. You see the Brazilian guy Alan Oliveira who beat him had longer blades. This is the only reason Oscar lost, I mean it’s not like he ran a slower time than he did in the heat or anything (Pistorius set a new world record of 21.30 in a qualifying heat, Olivera’s winning time in the final was 21.45) no definitely the longer blades.
Olivera has less legs than Pistorius so has to have longer blades. Blades that were deemed legal by the IPC. Maybe just maybe this was a race too far for Oscar. If you look at the summer he’s had competing with Olympic athletes at the able bodied games has to take it out of you emotionally and physically. Then just weeks later to try and run at peak fitness to defend 3 Paralympic titles maybe is biting off more than one man can chew.
I know all about the battle Pistorius had to try to run with the able bodied in the Olympics. It must be a great personal achievement for him to have finally done it last month. But now that Pistorius is an Olympian how is it that he gets to complete in the Paralympics. Surely thats like me using my blue badge to park nearer the start line to a marathon, running in it, only to collect my disability benefit at the finish line. I’m all for personal achievement, but you are either disabled or not otherwise whats to stop Jessica Ennis
coming around to my house to play hide the sausage...oops.. I mean competing in the Paralympic 100 meters.
Pistorius has for too long dominated everything he has done, and for every “he’s such a nice guy” I hear about him I think, it’s easy to be nice when you are winning. I think that part of the reason he fought so hard for Olympic inclusion was because he thought he was unbeatable by his fellow Paralympic athletes. “I’m bigger than this” I’m pleased he has been beaten fairly and squarely. It’s good for the sport. It’s even good for Pistorius, a wake up call.
All disabled people have to be driven. We all have to have a little bit of the bastard streak. Otherwise we will never do anything. This is why the disabled divorce and single rates are substantially higher than able bodied folks. Pistorius’ drive has taken him to the top of his sport even higher than that, for a few races last month he was “normal” living the dream. Last nights loss must have burst the bubble.. or cut through it like a longer blade.