Mo Farah at London Marathon: Runner says best is yet to come as he bids to mix it with the elite

Evening Standard
Farah finished third in this year's London Marathon: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images
Farah finished third in this year's London Marathon: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Mo Farah has warned his marathon rivals his best is yet to come over the distance.

The Londoner impressed in only his second stab at the 26.2-mile course, with third place and a British record on the streets of the capital.

After the disappointment of his 2014 debut, when he struggled from the outset, his display yesterday suggested there was an impressive post-track future ahead.

“You’ve got to fight and I managed to fight,” he said after his podium finish. “And I’ve got more fight.

“To run a personal best, break the British record and finish on the podium - right now, I can’t get better than that. It will take time to improve, just as it took time for me to win medals on the track.”

Farah described himself as “bollocksed” in the last 10 kilometres of a race which was run over world-record pace early on before the searing heat took its toll on the elite men.

His time of 2:06.21 broke Steve Jones’s 33-year-old British record, which Farah had targeted in the race lead-up.

As impressive as Farah was, the 35-year-old knows race winner Eliud Kipchoge - arguably the greatest marathon runner of all time - looks in a class of his own.

Farah was two minutes behind the Kenyan at the finish and it would need a gargantuan leap forward in subsequent marathons for the four-time Olympic champion to reduce the gap on him.

“I have watched him over the years and I will try to talk to him,” said Farah.

“On the day, you have no friends but outside of competition I would love to pick his brains.”

Despite losing out to race winner Kipchoge, Farah still eclipsed some of the world’s leading marathon runners on the day, notably Kenenisa Bekele and Daniel Wanjiru.

Predicting how much better Farah can get on the road is almost impossible, with the athlete and his coach, Gary Lough, in the infancy of a project which potentially has the next Olympics, in Tokyo in two years, as its main aim.

No doubt nursing sore legs after the rigours of the London Marathon, Farah has yet to plot the rest of his road-racing course. However, he hinted another marathon in the autumn - potentially Berlin in September - was his next target, ahead of next year’s World Championships in Doha.

He said: “If I perform like I did today, running 2:06, realistically if you look at it, no World Championships has been run that quick. And it would be different without pacemakers.

“I know that I’m capable of mixing it with the guys and we will make a judgment on that.

“My aim is maybe in the autumn to try to do another marathon, get more experience and then see what happens in the summer of 2019. Doha, eh?”

What to read next