“Train hard, win easy.” That was the philosophy espoused by Sir Mo Farah in his post-race interview after qualifying for Saturday's IAAF World Championships 5,000m final in London's Olympic Stadium last night (9 August). Scot Andrew Butchart also breezed through to the final after demonstrating his hurdling skills mid-race as he leapt over fallen competitors.
Train Hard, Win Easy Says Sir Mo
Medals are not given away at this level – they have to be earned. So strap yourselves in for a bumpy ride when the men's 5,000m final starts at 8.20pm on Saturday night (12 August). Newham and Essex Beagles' most famous member, Sir Mo Farah, has the top PB (12:53.11) of the 15 finalists but is only third fastest this year (13:00.70) behind Ethiopia's Muktar Edris (12:55.23) and Selemon Barega (12:55.58).
With Yomif Kajelcha (13:01.21) of Ethiopia also a threat there is the possibility of a team effort to prevent Farah from enjoying yet another golden hurrah in his own backyard. Of course, the prospect of ending his track career with an unprecedented seventh world title will drive Farah to the limit once again and no one has so far managed to live with his finishing speed.
Farah hinted at the tactics he might be expecting on Saturday when he said: “They are coming for me and they are hungry. You could see that in the heats, they want to prove a point. I’m going to do it – even if I am not ready, I’m going to do it. I just need to recover now.”
Butchart went through comfortably as a fastest loser in the second heat, ironically sporting a superb tan in the wet and miserable conditions in London. He had to protect himself on a few occasions as there was plenty of bumping and barging but he is well equipped for that aspect of championship racing.
“We could see the result from the previous heat so we could just jog it in on the last 200m,” said Butchart. “It wasn’t a slow race. They were all going pretty fast, which shows that a lot of the guys were fit and healthy. They are top athletes, so to get into the final is a good thing.”
The women's 5,000m final is scheduled for 7.35pm on Sunday (12 August) and Laura Muir will be desperate to take a medal after finishing an agonising 0.07sec behind bronze medallist Caster Semenya (South Africa) in the 1500m on Monday night (7 August).
View the IAAF World Championships timetable and results here.
Image courtesy British Athletics media