Oscar Pistorius withdraws from all race commitments

South African athlete Oscar Pistorius leaves the police station following his arrest for murder on February 14, 2013
© AP Photos
Oscar Pistorius has the continued support of sponsors but has withdrawn from all race commitments to concentrate on defending a murder charge, according to his agent.

Oscar Pistorius's management company have confirmed that the Paralympic gold medalist has been pulled out of all race commitments for this season to concentrate on preparing his defence for a murder charge.

The South African sprinter was formally charged with the murder of Reeva Steenkamp last Friday after she was shot dead at his home in Pretoria.

Pistorius was due to compete in the Manchester City games in May before building towards the IAAF world championships in August.

The 26-year-old's agent Peet van Zyl has issued a statement today insisting that the sprinter's sponsors will stick by him until legal proceedings have been completed.

He said: "Following my visit to Oscar Pistorius this afternoon at the Brooklyn police station in Pretoria I would like to issue this short statement. The nature of my visit was two-fold. On a personal level I wanted to offer my support to Oscar, whom I have known and worked with for the last seven years and consider a friend and a great professional athlete.

"Secondly, I wanted to briefly discuss racing matters given that his key focus is defending himself against this serious charge. I have decided that following these tragic events we have no option but to cancel all future races that Oscar Pistorius had been contracted to compete in, to allow Oscar to concentrate on the upcoming legal proceedings and to help and support all those involved as they try to come to terms with this very difficult and distressing situation.

"Regarding sponsors and partners, I can confirm that at this point all parties are supportive and their contractual commitments are maintained. They have said they are happy to let the legal process takes its course before making any change in their position."

Pistorius is back in court in Pretoria on Tuesday at a hearing to discuss bail.

South African athlete Oscar Pistorius leaves the police station following his arrest for murder on February 14, 2013
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