In only his third attempt, Great Britain’s Mo Farah has won his first marathon in Chicago. The four-time Olympic gold medallist previously competed in London in 2014 finishing eighth, and again in London this April where he finished third, setting a new British record of 2 hours, 6 minutes and 21 seconds in the process.
This time Farah’s clock stopped at 2 hours, 5 minutes and 11 seconds shaving a massive 70 seconds off his previous attempt. He became the first British athlete to win the event since Paul Evans in 1996.
After retiring from the track in August 2017 to focus on road racing, Farah won his record fifth-successive ‘Great North Run’ last month — this success in Chicago further solidifies him as a force to be reckoned with.
Talking about the race Farah said: “The conditions weren’t great and everyone was thinking about conditions rather than time, but towards the end we picked it up. I felt good towards the end of the race. At the beginning I felt a bit sluggish but overall I’m very happy with it.”
In the wet conditions Farah looked strong for much of the race, though he wasn’t alone in this display of form; it wasn’t until the final half-mile that he began distancing himself from Mosinet Geremew. A strong runner in his own right, Geremew became the first person to win twice at the ‘Yangzhou Jianzhen International Half Marathon’ with back-to-back wins in 2015 and 2016, setting the fastest ever half marathon time in a Chinese race.
The 26-year-old had to settle for second place in Illinois though as Farah crossed the line 13 seconds clear of the Ethiopian. Farah’s win means that he receives the mantle of victor from his former training partner Galen Rupp, with whom he competed in three Olympics.
Elsewhere in Chicago Kenya’s Brigid Kosgei, won the women’s race with a time of 2 hours, 18 minutes and 35 seconds, and Manuela Schar won the women’s wheelchair race in 1 hour, 41 minutes and 38 seconds. Six-time Paralympic gold medalist David Weir had to settle for third in the men’s wheelchair races as American Daniel Romanchuk took home the victory with a time of 1 hour, 31 minutes and 34 seconds.