As Christie writes in his book, he did not dedicate himself to training to the ultimate until quite late. As a result, he was in his late twenties when he became a world-beating athlete, and his greatest achievements came in his thirties. It is remarkable to think that in 1984, when they were in their early twenties, Lewis was nearly half a second faster over 100 metres.
The graphic above shows the contrast in their courses: Lewis's greatest days were nearly over before Linford began. Lewis was a specialist at antagonising opponents as well as demoralising them. Christie, of all contemporary gladiators, is not a man to be faced down. Lewis did not run in the Barcelona Olympics in 1992 and it rankled with Christie that people said that without Lewis it wasn't total victory. In a much-heralded money match at Gateshead in July 1993, Christie won, but Lewis complained of jet lag. A month later at the World Championships, Christie won gold and Lewis came in fourth. So each beat the other when it mattered, but the truth is that as they peaked at such different stages of their careers Lewis and Christie never properly met.Reuse content