Eyob Faniel and Hellen Obiri dominate as Britain’s four-time Olympic champion completes his penultimate race
Not so long ago, the sight of Mo Farah putting in a late sprint meant one thing – victory. At the Great Manchester Run on Sunday (May 21), though, the four-time Olympic champion’s closing burst brought him only eighth place.
In truth, this penultimate race of his career was always likely to be far more ceremonial than competitive but his presence brought the crowds out in force once again. As with last month’s London Marathon, he was afforded the chance to soak up the acclaim of a huge public audience who were more than willing to urge him on.
There was to be no fairytale ending as he finished in 29:11, some way back from winner Eyob Faniel’s 28:27, but the sight of the 40-year-old trying to put his foot down as he approached the line betrayed the competitive character who has struck global gold no fewer than 10 times.
Farah knows, however, that his race is run.
“I will miss it,” he said. “I loved doing what I did over the years and I will the miss the crowd, miss the support. My mind wants to do it but my body can’t quite do it, and obviously you’ve got to call it a day. I’m also looking forward to retiring, spending time with my kids and hopefully still be involved in the sport.”
“I’d just love to see youngsters not put hurdles in front of them.” @Mo_Farah wants to stay involved in athletics after he retires 💥
He finished eighth in 29:11 at the Great Manchester Run 10km and says he’ll miss these kind of atmospheres 🇬🇧
🎙️ @euancrumley pic.twitter.com/se1rKyZ3JV
— AW (@AthleticsWeekly) May 21, 2023
While he considers was his next steps might be, Farah’s final outing will come later this year, in September at the Great North Run – an event he has won six times. “I promised [Great North Run founder] Brendan Foster ‘one day you’ll see me crossing the Tyne Bridge in the lead’, and I’ve done that six times. Hopefully one more time maybe,” he said.
While the sight of Farah battling it out was one to which the crowd were accustomed, less familiar was Faniel being at the head of affairs.
It was perhaps fitting that, at a time when the BAFTA-winning Farah has been highlighting the difficulties which individuals can face when attempting to make a life in a new country, another man who once had to go through his own switch of national identity was leading the…
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