MO IS NOT ‘TOO OLD’
Farah silences his critics at Prefontaine Classic
MO Farah pounded his chest after crossing the finish line on a US track for perhaps the final time.
Farah won the 5,000 metres at the Prefontaine Classic at Oregon’s Hayward Field on Saturday in 13 minutes, 0.70 seconds.
The British distance specialist plans to retire from track races after the world championships in London this August. He’s said that after that he’ll likely focus on the marathon.
American Ronnie Baker bested both countryman Justin Gatlin and Canadian Andre De Grasse to win the men’s 100, while Tori Bowie prevailed over a strong field that included Allyson Felix and Jamaican Elaine Thompson to win the 200 on a brilliantly sunny but breezy day.
Farah, who was knighted by Queen Elizabeth late last year, was the star of the Diamond League’s lone stop in the United States, holding off Ethiopian Yomif Kejelcha and Kenyan Geoffrey Kamworwor.
He beamed when he said the victory answered those naysayers who scoff that he is too old at 34.
“If I wasn’t enjoying it, I wouldn’t be winning,” Farah said, holding his toddler son Hussein. “I’m happy, I’m enjoying and I work hard. As long as you work hard and you believe in yourself you can come up with the results.”
Considered one of the strongest 5,000 fields in recent memory, Farah was joined in the race by Paul Chelimo, who won silver in the 5K in Rio, and Kenyan Paul Tanui, the silver medalist in the 10K. The field was crowded with 29 entrants.
Baker, a twotime NCAA champion in the 60, was happy to spoil the Pre’s anticipated showdown between Gatlin and De Grasse. He won in a wind-aided 9.86 seconds.
“I felt great,” Baker said. “I felt like I had a really good start for the first time in a long time, so that was amazing and after that I just went through my motions, executed and came out with a victory.” Americans Devon Allen, Aries Merritt and David Oliver challenged Olympic champion Omar McLeod of Jamaica in the 110 hurdles, with McLeod coming out on top in 13.01 seconds. Ronald Levy was second and Allen was third.
Morolake Akinosun won the women’s 100 in 10.94.
Tori seemed as surprised as anyone that she won the 200, describing the race as “practice” for nationals. She finished in a meet record 21.77 seconds.
“My coach and my manager made sure they clarified that this was all to prepare for the nationals, so I was like, ‘OK, it’s just practice then,” she said. “I executed my plan and it went well.”
Other winners Saturday included Americans Jasmine Stowers, who won the 100 hurdles in 12.59; Christian Taylor, who won the Triple Jump in 59 feet, 5 inches; LaShawn Merritt, who ran the 400 in 44.79; and Sam Kendricks, who won the pole vault with a leap of 19 feet, 2 3/4 inches.
South Africa’s Caster Semenya won the women’s 800 in 1:57.78; Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon won the 1,500 in 3:59.67. AP
I’m enjoying and I work hard. As long as you work hard and you believe in yourself you can come up with the results.
Mo Farah celebrates winning the 5,000m in the Prefontaine Classic on Saturday.