Britain’s 10-time global champion hasn’t ruled out defending his world 10,000m title
All roads lead to the Virgin Money London Marathon for Mo Farah right now, but the 10-time global gold medallist admits that he remains tempted by a track return at the IAAF World Championships in Doha later this year.
Ahead of racing in Sunday’s Vitality Big Half – where former London Marathon winners Wilson Kipsang and Daniel Wanjiru will be among his rivals – Farah confirmed that a defence of his world 10,000m title hadn’t been ruled out and said that watching athletes including Laura Muir racing at the recent European Indoors in Glasgow made him realise how much he misses track action.
“Having seen my fellow athletes that I’ve competed against (on the track), and watching the European Indoors on TV, I was thinking ‘Oh man! I want to get back out there’,” said the 35-year-old, who announced his decision to switch from track athletics to road racing after claiming his sixth world title in London in 2017.
“I do miss it, that sort of atmosphere Laura got. You get it in the London Marathon more than anything else, but I do miss the track, I do miss representing my country and competing on home soil.
“Part of me, when I watch track races, I’m like, ‘can I still do it? I want to do it’.
“If things are going well and I’ve got a chance to win a medal (on the track) then I’d love to come back and run for my country, but my aim for now is to concentrate on the marathon and don’t get excited.”
Farah forms part of a formidable field for the London Marathon in April, with Kenya’s world record-holder Eliud Kipchoge among eight sub-2:05 men on the entry list. After claiming a first marathon victory in Chicago in October, when he clocked 2:05:11 to break the European record, the Briton is focused on securing 26.2-mile success in the UK capital.
“I would love to be able to do well in London and win,” said Farah, who improved from running 2:08:21 and finishing eighth on his 26.2-mile debut in 2014 to clocking a then British record of 2:06:21 for third last year.
“That is my dream one day. I don’t know if it is going to be this year, next year, or the following year.”
His preparations for this year’s race include two training spells in Ethiopia – broken up by Sunday’s Big Half half-marathon in London.
“At the minute, with where I am, I am confident I can mix it with Eliud and the rest of the guys,” Farah added. “I try not to think negative. It all depends on what happens on the day.
“I know from last year, with that field, many might have thought I would be maybe fourth or fifth. You had (Kenenisa) Bekele, Eliud, Wanjiru – so many guys. To a lot of people it was a surprise that I finished third but that is me believing and digging in deep.”