FARAH’S CA­REER GOES FULL CIR­CLE

Athletics Weekly - - News - Ja­son Hen­der­son, ed­i­tor

GREAT North Run win­ner Mo Farah has never been short of stay­ing power. In 1998, aged 15, he won the Lon­don Mini Marathon on the morn­ing of April 26 but the event was a mere warm-up for an­other race on the same day.

Af­ter win­ning on the roads of the English cap­i­tal, he didn’t hang around to watch Cathe­rina McKiernan and Abel An­ton storm to vic­tory over the full marathon dis­tance. In­stead, he rushed off to St Al­bans to win a 1500m steeple­chase in 4:46.2 for his club, Bor­ough of Houn­slow, at the McDon­ald’s Young Ath­letes’ League.

Next April will mark ex­actly 20 years since that Mini Marathon vic­tory. At the age of 35 and with 10 global track ti­tles un­der his belt, he will line up in Lon­don again to tackle the full 26.2-mile dis­tance (News, p20).

Af­ter strug­gling to eighth place in ‘only’ 2:08:21 in his marathon de­but in 2014, he knows the 2018 event will not be easy. A fur­ther re­minder of how tough it will be will come on Septem­ber 24, too, when the big guns of men’s marathon­ing at­tack the world record in Ber­lin (News, p22).

Win­ning aside, Farah’s tar­get will be Steve Jones’ Bri­tish record of 2:07:13. As he en­ters the twi­light of his ca­reer, it won’t be easy, but he won’t be short of stamina, speed and sup­port as his ca­reer comes around full cir­cle to the same streets of Lon­don where it all started 20 years ear­lier.

THE Ber­lin Marathon this month is Stu­art Storey’s penul­ti­mate event as an ath­let­ics com­men­ta­tor as he brings the cur­tain down on a splen­did ca­reer.

I caught up with Storey (right) re­cently for a sprint down mem­ory lane and the in­ter­view (see p30-33) gives a snap­shot of an amaz­ing life in ath­let­ics which has in­volved not only com­men­tat­ing along­side the leg­endary David Cole­man and Ron Pick­er­ing, but be­ing an Olympic sprint hur­dler in his own right.

SHEAR­MAN MARK

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