U.S. sprinter Chryste Gaines, facing a lifetime ban from U.S. Anti-Doping Agency for alleged drug violations, has elected to contest the matter in the international Court of Arbitration for Sport rather than in the North American CAS, becoming the second of four athletes recently charged by USADA to choose that legal tack.

Gaines's attorney, Cameron Myler, said yesterday that she requested the arbitration before the international CAS on Gaines's behalf because she had doubts about whether Gaines would receive a fair trial in front of the North American court. USADA's protocol offers athletes the option of a direct appeal to the international CAS under the condition that all parties accept the decision as binding.

Myler said she hoped a hearing would take place before the July 21 deadline for the U.S. Olympic Committee to submit its roster for the 2004 Olympics, but strongly doubted it could occur in time for the Olympic trials, which begin this Friday in Sacramento.

Tim Montgomery, the 100-meter world record holder, also has requested arbitration through the international CAS.

"Our thinking is probably very similar to that of Tim Montgomery and his team," Myler said. "We feel we will be able to get the most fair hearing before CAS instead of in the USADA process."

-- Amy Shipley

GAINES