Montgomery retires in wake of 2-year doping ban

SALVO, N.C. -- Former world 100-meters record holder Tim Montgomery has announced his retirement, one day after receiving a two-year doping ban from the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

"I'm done. I have retired," Montgomery told Reuters on Wednesday in a telephone call from his residence in Hampton, Va.

Montgomery also confirmed he had split up with his partner Marion Jones, the triple Olympic champion from the 2000 Sydney Games.

"It's kind of hard to be underneath the same household when you are going through some of the same things," he said. "We decided to remain friends so we can concentrate on making a future for our [2-year-old] son. We decided to make a decision to better ourselves for our kid."

Montgomery and fellow U.S. sprinter Chryste Gaines were each banned for two years on Tuesday after CAS accepted evidence
the two had taken the designer steroid THG that is at the center of the BALCO doping scandal.

Montgomery, 30, said he had never knowingly taken a banned substance. He did not test positive for drugs.

The Lausanne, Switzerland-based CAS said it had accepted evidence that both athletes told double world sprint champion Kelli White they
had been taking THG.

Montgomery denied telling White in a conversation in 2001 that he had used the steroid.

"She said she told me, 'It (THG) made me tight,'" Montgomery told Reuters.

"I had just ran 6.46 seconds, the best time I had ever run [over 60 meters]. So I was complaining ... she was the one who had cramped up.

"If they [CAS] went by the evidence, they would have never had a case."

Meanwhile, Montgomery stands to lose a lot more than his world record and medals. His ban also could cost him as much as $1 million.

Track and field's governing body said Wednesday it will ask Montgomery to return his prize money and appearances fees since March, 31, 2001, including the $250,000 he earned for setting a world record in the 100 meters in 2002.

"The exact amount won't be known until we have worked out which competitions Tim needs to be disqualified from," IAAF spokesman Nick Davies said.

The International Association of Athletics Federations is studying Montgomery's results before settling on how much he needs to pay back.

Montgomery's big one-race payday came at an IAAF Grand Prix final in Paris in September 2002. The sprinter was paid $250,000 in prize money and bonuses.

While the IAAF studies Montgomery's earnings, estimates range from $500,000 to $1 million -- or more.

Montgomery became one of the most coveted runners after breaking the 100 record. Svein Arne Hansen, director of the Golden
League meet in Oslo, Norway, estimated Montgomery would have commanded an average of $40,000 in appearance fees per meet after that.

Hansen also said Montgomery would have collected about $15,000 for race victories during the entire 4½-year period, and he estimated total earnings of more $500,000 but less than $1 million.

Based on appearance fees ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 per meet, Montgomery would have earned more than $700,000. Add the $250,000 for his world-record effort, and it's possible the sprinter earned closer to $1 million.

The IAAF rule book allows for the federation to seek the repayment of appearance and prize money. It does not say what would happen if an athlete refuses, but presumably the case could go to court or arbitration.

In any case, it is unclear if Montgomery has the means to pay it back.

Dick Pound, the World Anti-Doping Agency chief, said going after athletes' prize money will "hit them where it hurts."

"It will be interesting if they don't return the money whether somebody who came second might sue them for it," Pound said.

Montgomery's mark of 9.78 seconds -- later broken by Jamaica's Asafa Powell, who did it in 9.77 seconds -- was wiped off the books by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, which banned Montgomery and fellow U.S. sprinter Chryste Gaines for using prohibited substances.

Pound said the penalties sent a strong message.

"It's finally driven a stake through the heart of that preposterous argument you can only have a positive doping result if you produce a positive analytical result," he said in a telephone interview. "The noose is getting a little tighter around these folks now."

Ironically, the sprinter who finished second behind Montgomery in his world-record race also was suspended for doping. Britain's Dwain Chambers, another BALCO client, tested positive for steroids in 2003 and has served a two-year ban.

All of Montgomery's performances since March 31, 2001, were canceled, including his 100-meter silver medal and 400 relay gold from the 2001 world championships. Gaines' results and prizes since Nov. 30, 2003, also were annulled.

USA Track & Field said it would recognize Maurice Greene's previous 100 record of 9.79 seconds -- set in 1999 -- as the U.S. mark.

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.