The 23-year-old Kenyan — whose father won silver in the 4x400m relay in the 1968 Games — did it in style as he shattered his own world record in what was the fastest ever 800m race.
Rudisha, who was the first Olympic champion since Cuban Alberto Juantorena in 1976 to break the world record at 800m, said he had been thinking of his father prior to the race.
“In fact even before I started my race I thought of how my father was watching me back at home on television because of course he couldn’t come here,” he said.
“He was always encouraging me and I wouldn’t be here but for him. He is a big inspiration to me. I was always dreaming of doing better than him and go a step further than him. I remember him saying that in the 1960s he wanted to break the 400m world record but he couldn’t do it. But for his son to do it is a great honour.”