LONDON, April 11 (Reuters) - Kenya’s 800 metres world record holder David Rudisha plans to run no more than three races before the London Olympics, starting with the opening Diamond League meeting in Doha next month.
Rudisha is favourite to add the Olympic title to his world crown won in Daegu last year, However, he told reporters on Wednesday his style of running from the front made it difficult to sustain his form.
“It’s hard to maintain and always to win races especially with my way of running,” the 23-year-old said in a conference call from his training base in Iten, Kenya.
“I know it’s going to be tough and that’s why I want to race in Doha and see how it goes and from there I can discuss and see if I want to try another one.
“But probably I don’t think I can do more than three (races) before the Olympics,” added Rudisha, who started as a 400 metres runner before switching to the two-lap race and has not discounted running the relay in London.
“I think I can do that,” he said when asked about taking part in the 4x400 metres.
The London Olympics, which open on July 27, will the first Games for Rudisha after he missed out on Beijing four years ago when he suffered an injury before the Kenyan trials.
His father Daniel won silver at the 1968 Mexico City Games as part of Kenya’s 4x400 metres relay team and Rudisha is keen to add to the family’s Olympic medal haul.
“This is an important year - being the world record holder and world champion those are good titles but I’m missing the big one which is Olympic,” he said.
“People are expecting a lot from me because of my reputation at 800 metres and I know there’s a lot of pressure from everywhere, from home, my friends in Kenya...everybody says I’m the favourite.
“I’ve always had that dream, that one day I want to do it and I want to be there and hear the national anthem when I’m on the podium,” added Rudisha.
“I’m just giving that a priority...I don’t want to put something else ahead of that.
“My father being an Olympian in 1968...I want to bring home maybe a gold medal so we can have two medals from the Olympics.”
Rudisha also felt he could improve on his world record of 1:41.01 set in Rieti August 2010, although he dismissed talk of going under 1:40.
“I think maybe to do sub-1:41 is possible but to do sub-1:40? I still don’t know how it can be (done) or who can do that. But from my point of view, I still think there’s room for improvement to do under 1:41,” he said.
Editing by John Mehaffey