Athletics: New claim over Christie test

LINFORD CHRISTIE'S manager was quick to respond last night to uncomfirmed reports that he may have had 100 times the legal amount of the banned drug nandrolone in his urine sample. Sue Barrett said: "The facts will come out in due course. It would have been nice if the whole affair could have been conducted without it becoming public. We are confident that Linford will be cleared."

Christie, 39, has been suspended by the International Amateur Athletics Federation after positively testing for the drug after appearing in an event in Dortmund on 13 February. The legal limit for nandrolone is two nanograms per millilitre of sample. But sources close to the testing are said to have revealed the sprinter's sample contained 200 nanogrammes per milliletre.

Christie, meanwhile, says he has been touched by the messages of support he has received but will now try to keep a low profile.

A statement issued through his company `Nuff Respect' read: "Linford has been overwhelmed by the hundreds of messages of support he has received from the general public. Best wishes and kind words have been received from athletes around the world supporting Linford in this difficult time. "It is Linford's wish that nothing distracts the athletes from their performances and therefore, he has made the decision not to attend either Crystal Palace or Zurich."

Christie also received support from the British long-distance runner Paula Radcliffe, who has criticised current testing procedures.