Rio 2016: Mighty Mo Farah wins Olympic gold again
PUBLISHED: 07:37 14 August 2016 | UPDATED: 07:37 14 August 2016
PA/Press Association Images
Newham & Essex Beagles star defends 10,000m title in Rio
Mo Farah put in a stunning performance to become the first British athlete to win three Olympic gold medals on the track as he defended the 10,000m title he won at London 2012 in Rio.
The 33-year-old went into the race as the overwhelming favourite and looked supremely confident having not been beaten at a major competition in the distance since the 2011 World Championships.
And, despite a stumble early on in the race, Farah recovered to pass Paul Tanui of Kenya in the home stretch to win in 27mins 05.17secs.
Tanui hung on for silver in a time of 27.05.64 while Ethiopia’s Tamirat Tola won bronze in 27.06.26.
And Farah will now look to defend his 5,000m title for the ’double-double’ when qualifying for that event gets underway on Wednesday. Should he achieve the feat, he would become only the second man after Lasse Viren in 1976 to retain two Olympic distance titles.
He said: “It is never an easy thing when you know you have got a target on your back.
“When I fell down, for a moment I thought my race was over, my dream was over but then I managed to dig deep.
“I promised my daughter Rhianna I was going to get her a medal and I was thinking ‘I can’t let her down’. That is all I was thinking about – her. That is why I was quite emotional at the end because it almost went.
“As each lap went down, I was getting more and more confident. With the bell, I was thinking ‘Just don’t waste too much energy’.
“I didn’t know what some of the others could do so I just wanted to make sure I had something at the end.
“I think I am more of a guy that wins medals rather than run fast times. For me, one of the things that keeps me going is winning medals for my country and making my nation proud.”
There was disappointment for Farah’s fellow Beagle, Asha Philip, as she ran 11.33secs in the semi-finals of the women’s 100m to rank 23rd and miss out on the final.
The 25-year-old said: “I got a good start, but I’ve still got a lot to work on. I’m not doing as well as I want to be doing, but I’m still at the Olympics and I’ve made a semi-final, but I am bitter inside because I came here to at least run a personal best.
“If wasn’t going to make the final I at least wanted to walk away from the track knowing I’ve done all I can, but I didn’t this time. I’ve had such a tough time getting here and I have to keep telling myself I should be proud for getting here.
“But you always want more don’t you, so it is hard. But I’ve still got years left and I just need to take this and turn it into something positive in the relay. These girls are no joke; I know I’ve got it in me so I just need to keep trying.”
Philip returns to the track for the 4x100m relay heats on Thursday.