ROME Double-amputee sprinter Oscar Pistorius missed out in another attempt to qualify for the Olympics on Friday, but sliced more than a second off his 400-meter time from last week.
The South African finished in 46.62 seconds to place seventh in the 400 meter B race at the Golden Gala meet Friday. He must run a 45.55 to qualify for the Olympics.
Last week in Milan, in his first able-bodied race in nearly a year, Pistorius ran a 47.78. His lifetime best is 46.36.
"I felt this race was awesome, but I can still improve," he said. "After last week's race in Milan I was really worried and I was very nervous going in tonight."
Pistorius resumed training less than two months ago after a sports arbitration court ruled he was eligible to run in Beijing.
The court overturned a decision by the IAAF that Pistorius' carbon-fiber prosthetics gave him an unfair advantage and that he should be banned from the Olympics and any other able-bodied race.
On Sunday, Pistorius plans to run a 200-meter race in Lignano, Italy, "for fun," to work on his sprinting, then will make perhaps his final Olympic attempt in Lucerne, Switzerland, on Wednesday.
Pistorius said he still hopes to qualify for the Olympics but "it was always going to be a very difficult goal, I have to be realistic and I have to admit the chances are slim."
Pistorius has struggled to regain his form after spending most of 2008 away from training to concentrate on fighting the ban, which was lifted May 16.
His most realistic shot to compete in the Aug. 8-24 Beijing Games could be as part of South Africa's four-man relay, for which six team members are chosen.
Pistorius said he feels he probably must go under 46 seconds to make the relay.
"But even if the Olympic dream doesn't come down this time ... I'm still very happy," he said.
Either way, Pistorius plans to race in the Sept. 6-17 Paralympics in Beijing then focus on qualifying for the 2012 London Games.
Pistorius was born without fibulas the long, thin outer bone between the knee and ankle and was 11 months old when his legs were amputated below the knee.