Linford Christie

Linford Christie bigraphy, stories - English athlete, Olympic medalist

Linford Christie : biography

2 April 1960 –

Linford Cicero Christie OBE (born 2 April 1960 in Saint Andrew, Jamaica) is a former sprinter from the United Kingdom. He is the only British man to have won gold medals in the 100 metres at all four major competitions open to British athletes: the Olympic Games, the World Championships, the European Championships and the Commonwealth Games. He was the first European to break the 10-second barrier in the 100 m and still holds the British record in the event. He is a former world indoor record holder over 200 metres, and a former European record holder in the 60 metres, 100 m and 4 x 100 metres relay. With 24 major championship medals including 10 gold medals, he is the most decorated British male athlete.

Christie’s track career was ended when he received a two-year ban for taking a performance-enhancing substance, although he has always denied any wrongdoing. Since his retirement he has focused on coaching, helping Katharine Merry and Darren Campbell to Olympic medals, and his sports management company.


As of 2009, Christie’s British record of 9.87 seconds in the 100 metres makes him the second fastest European in history; second only to Francis Obikwelu’s 9.86 s personal best which broke Christie’s European record. His 100 m personal best fares favourably in comparison with his contemporaries: Carl Lewis and Frankie Fredericks managed 9.86 s while Leroy Burrell ran 9.85 s.

His gold medal performances in world, European, Commonwealth and Olympic competitions rank him as one of the most successful 100 m sprinters in international events. He won 10 gold medals and a total of 24 medals over his career in major championships; the record for any British male athlete. UK Athletics; Retrieved on 2009-01-20 He was the third Briton, after Harold Abrahams and Allan Wells, and the fifth European to win the 100 m at the Olympic Games. He remains the oldest male athlete to win the 100 m at the Olympics.

In the 4 x 100 m relay event Christie’s performance as anchor, alongside Colin Jackson, Tony Jarrett and John Regis, set a European record of 37.77 s at the 1993 World Championships. This was beaten six years later by a 37.73 s run by a British team, which included his protégé Darren Campbell. gbrathletics; Retrieved 2008-01-20 However, Christie’s team’s performance is still the second fastest 4 x 100 m performance by a European team and one of the best by a non-United States relay team. IAAF Retrieved on 2008-01-20

Over 60 m, Christie set a European record of 6.47 s in 1995 which was beaten by fellow Briton Jason Gardener in 1999 with 6.46 s. Christie has the fourth fastest time over the distance for a European after Gardener, Ronald Pognon IAAF; Retrieved on 2009-01-20 and the current European record holder Dwain Chambers.

Christie also holds 3 current 35–39 masters age group world records. On 23 September 1995, Christie set the current M35 world record of 9.97 in the 100 m. On 25 June 1995 he set the current M35 world record in the 200 m in 20.11 seconds and on 3 January 1997 Christie set the current indoor record in the M35 60 m in a time of 6.51 seconds.

In 2010, he was inducted into the England Athletics Hall of Fame and in 2009 he was inducted into the London Youth Games Hall of Fame.

Date Event Venue Time (seconds)
19 February 1995 60 metres Liévin, France 6.47
15 August 1993 100 metres Stuttgart, Germany 9.87 (UK national record); gbrathletics; Retrieved on 2009-01-20
4 September 1994 150 metres Sheffield, United Kingdom 14.97; gbrathletics; Retrieved on 2009-01-20
28 September 1988 200 metres Seoul, South Korea 20.09
1988 300 metres ? 33.80
1991 400 metres ? 47.75