top of page


BBC Factual has announced Linford (w/t), a no-holds barred 90 minute film for BBC One and iPlayer, with unfettered access to athlete Linford Christie, as he talks exclusively about the highs and lows of a glittering athletics career, from the glory of winning Olympic gold to the impact of failing a drugs test after coming out of retirement for one last race.

In the 1990s, Linford Christie was a bonafide household name. The only British man to win successive golds at the Olympic Games, World Championships, European Championships and Commonwealth Games, he was as famous as any celebrity in the UK. His sprinting victories united the country in celebration and prompted endless media coverage of his life.

He won 24 medals in a highly decorated decade of dominance, retired in 1997 and seemed to disappear off our screens. That might be explained by what happened in 1999 – when he briefly came out of retirement to settle a bet with the athletes he was coaching and tested positive for nandrolone.

Now for the first time, Linford is daring himself to confront the past and consider his legacy. His journey has been far from plain sailing. Linford suffered harrassment by the police and sexual objectification by the media, in an era of unchecked racism and tabloid power.

This is at once a story about race, respect and reputation, an allegory about what it takes to be a winner, and a cautionary tale of how an illustrious career can be brought low by a single moment. With unprecedented access and never before seen archive, this nostalgic and revelatory documentary examines the life story of a man who took on the world.

Linford Christie says "I was born to run and regardless of whatever obstacles they threw in my way, it never stopped my belief. I was never the fastest, I just made everyone else believe that I was. I never focussed on the last race, always on the next one, which is why this documentary has been something completely different for me as it has made me reflect on all aspects of my career."

Simon Young, Head of Commissioning, History, says “In the late 80s and 90s Linford Christie was Britain’s most famous and fêted athlete. His career isn’t just a fascinating window into the pressures of sporting success, but an insight into an era when casual objectification and racism were unbound. That uncomfortable history – and the fact that he has chosen to break his silence after 20 years – makes this documentary a unique exploration of a sporting icon and his legacy.”

Linford (w/t), a 1x90‘ for BBC One and iPlayer, is made by Story Films.


bottom of page