Britain's Ohuruogu says medal is what matters
BEIJING (Reuters) - Christine Ohuruogu said she could not care less what people thought about her tainted record after winning the women's 400 meters Olympic gold medal on Tuesday.
The 24-year-old Briton stormed to the gold in 49.62 seconds, an Olympic dream that once looked impossible when the British Olympic Association (BOA) banned her for life for missing three out-of-competition drug tests.
Ohuruogu received a mandatory one-year ban from the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) in 2006 under their strict three strikes policy.
She completed her ban in 2007, winning the gold medal at last year's world championships in Osaka less than a month after her return, but the BOA imposed an automatic life ban from the Olympics.
Ohuruogu fought a long and expensive legal battle to have the Olympic ban overturned and was eventually cleared to compete after an independent panel decided there were "significant mitigating circumstances" surrounding her missed tests.
The athlete, who has always denied using drugs, said she no longer worried what people thought or said about her.
"I don't really care what people say. All I'm concerned about is that I am here and I've won the gold medal," she said.
"They can consider what they like."
Ohuruogu, who has Nigerian heritage, briefly threatened to compete for another country in Beijing if she lost her appeal.
Tuesday's victory saw her become the first Briton to win an athletics gold in the Bird's Nest.
It also ensured she will become one of the faces of the next Olympics in London in 2012 because she was born within minutes of where the athletics stadium is being built.
"It would be great if I could be there," she said.
(Additional reporting by John Ruwitch; Editing by Ed Osmond and Ralph Gowling)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this