Rudisha wants to improve on Olympic time at Diamond League meet
ZURICH (AP) -- Olympic champion David Rudisha plans to attack his 800-meter world record when he runs his final race of the season on Thursday.
Rudisha said Wednesday he will "try and see if it's possible" to improve on the 1 minute, 40.91 seconds he clocked at the London Olympics when he competes at the Weltklasse Diamond League meet.
"That's what I'm looking for. This being my last race of the season, I think I just want to give my best," the 23-year-old Kenyan said.
Rudisha led throughout his Olympic victory three weeks ago, but will use training partner Sammy Tangui to pace him through the first 400 on Thursday.
"The last lap I do it myself," said Rudisha, whose first appearance since winning the gold medal will be just his 11th competitive race this year. "Every race is important in our season and we always want to do the best every time."
That selective program was designed with Rudisha's coach, an Irish missionary based in Kenya who has come to Zurich to see the race.
"After what he did in London without a pace-setter, you wonder if he really needs one," coach Colm O'Connell said.
O'Connell described Rudisha as a "great student" of the 800 who has analyzed how previous record holders Sebastian Coe and Wilson Kipketer ran their races.
At Zurich in 1997, Kipketer set the second of his three world record times, a 1:41.24 run, just weeks after lowering Coe's mark of 1:41.73 which had stood for 16 years. Kipketer's 13-year reign was ended by Rudisha in 2010.
Still, the Swiss weather could harm Rudisha's chances at the sold-out Letzigrund stadium with rain and 61 Fahrenheit temperatures forecast.
"The weather plays a very big role," acknowledged Rudisha, who won his two previous appearances at Zurich. "I have run very few races in the raining and the cold."