Olympic 5000m finalist overcomes strong men’s Cross Challenge line-up, while Gemma Steel clinches the women’s race
Mo Farah victorious on track returnJune 16, 2014
Double world and Olympic champion runs 13:23.42 5000m at Portland Track Festival in his first track race since the World Championships
Mo Farah made a winning return to track action on Sunday evening as he clocked 13:23.42 for 5000m victory at the low-key Portland Track Festival.
In his first race back on the track since he won world 5000m gold in Moscow last August, the double world and Olympic champion demonstrated his usual finishing strength to run a 53 second last lap and cross the line well clear of Australia’s David McNeill with 13:28.13.
Farah’s last competitive outing had come at the London Marathon in April where he broke the English marathon record with 2:08:21 for eighth place.
Farah, who also won the 10,000m title in Russia last summer to complete the Olympic and world distance ‘double-double’, also ran a 53 second lap at the World Championships to deny Ethiopia’s Hagos Gebrhiwet.
His time puts him third in the UK 2014 rankings behind British 10,000m champion Andy Vernon, who ran a 13:11.50 PB in California in May, and Tom Farrell who ran 13:22.27 at that same meeting.
“My aim was just to run a good race here, I wasn’t thinking too much about the time, just running,” Farah told reporters after the race. “It’s nice to be back on the track.”
The 31-year-old confirmed his focus for the year is the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, where he says he would like to run both the 5000m and 10,000m. The England team for the Commonwealth Games is due to be announced on Monday (June 16).
Also among the winners at the weekend-long Portland Track Festival was fellow Nike Oregon Project athlete Jordan Hasay who won both the 1500m and 5000m, while French athlete Noureddine Smail won the men’s 10,000m.
» Results from the Portland Track Festival can be found here