By Mitch Phillips
LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe has denied "cheating in any form" and said on Tuesday she was devastated that her name had been linked to wide-ranging accusations.
Radcliffe, who retired from competitive athletics earlier this year following a persistent foot injury, has not been named in any mainstream British media stories relating to recent blood doping accusations but feels her name was alluded to during a British Parliamentary Committee hearing into the issue on Tuesday.
"These accusations threaten to undermine all I have
stood and competed for, as well as my hard earned reputation. By linking me to allegations of cheating, damage done to my name and reputation can never be fully repaired, no matter how
untrue I know them to be," said Radcliffe, whose marathon world record of 2 hours, 15 minutes, 25 seconds set in 2003 remains almost three minutes faster than any other woman has ever managed.
"Whilst I have the greatest of respect for anyone responsibly trying to uncover cheating in sport,
and of course for parliament itself, it is profoundly disappointing that the cloak of parliamentary
privilege has been used to effectively implicate me, tarnishing my reputation, with full knowledge that I have no recourse against anyone for repeating what has been said at the Committee
Radcliffe wasn't mentioned by name during Tuesday's hearing, but a question was asked about the validity of British women's performances in the London marathon, which she has won three times.
(Editing by: Ossian Shine)