Olympic cycling star Sir Chris Hoy has defended his tax arrangements following reports that he borrowed money from his own company.
The Edinburgh-born sportsman, now based in Manchester, said he had arranged a loan in 2010 from Trackstars Ltd, but it was repaid in full the following year and all tax had been paid.
He said: "I saw an opportunity to buy property and with the guidance of my advisers I borrowed money from my company to do so. The loan was subsequently repaid shortly thereafter by declaration of fully taxable dividends.
"The dividends that I took to repay the loan were in fact taxed at the highest rate."
Sir Chris, who is due to carry the Olympic torch into the centre of Manchester later this month, said he hoped the claims would not affect his support at the London Olympics.
The 36-year-old's company has received lottery money in the past, but the funding stopped in October 2008.
He insisted he took his responsibilities as a taxpayer "as seriously as I do as an athlete".
He said: "I am very proudly British and my responsibilities as a British sportsman do not stop once I step off the bike."
Last week comedian Jimmy Carr was criticised by Prime Minister David Cameron for avoiding tax through a complex offshore tax arrangement.
Mr Cameron refused to be drawn when asked about the tax affairs of Tory donors such as Take That star Gary Barlow, who has been accused of operating a similar scheme.
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