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Athletics | Running

Mo Farah © Gallo Images

Farah eyes marathon record

Olympic champion Mo Farah has set his sights on adding to his growing collection of British long-distance records when he makes his full London Marathon debut next year.

Farah, who already holds national records on the track at 5 000 and 10 000 metres, ran half of the Marathon course during Sunday's race to get a taste for the unique challenges of the event so he can last the distance in 12 months time.

Having kept up with the leading group as they covered the first half in world record pace, Somalia-born Farah, who won gold in the 5 000 and 10 000 metres at the London Olympics last year, will look to shatter Steve Jones' British record of two hours seven minutes 13 seconds when he competes for real.

"I'm looking forward to it and I hope that I can do it," Farah said on Monday.

"I would like to get close to it. It would be nice to come out in my first marathon and to smash that rather than having a bad one and running 2:13 or 2:10. I would like to go inside 2:09 and then anything can happen.

"But it will be my first marathon so we don't know what to expect.

"Yes, I am good at the half marathon, but that doesn't necessarily mean I am going to be great at the marathon.

"You've seen someone like Zersenay Tadese, who's the world record holder at half marathon and it just hasn't quite worked out for him at the marathon. It's a challenge."

While Farah's first taste of the race has left him thirsty for more, the 30-year-old knows the last British man to win the London Marathon was Eamonn Martin 20 years ago.

Expectations will be high in his first 26.2 mile outing, but Farah admitted that the pace as the leaders went over Tower Bridge just before halfway was a shock.

"You can't just think, 'This is my first marathon, I'm going to smash it'," he added.

"It doesn't happen like that. It might happen one time and you might get it right, but it's a challenge."


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