Eight days after breaking the one-hour world record at the Brussels Diamond League, Mo Farah was back in action at the Antrim Coast Half-Marathon in Larne, Northern Ireland, on Saturday. Farah won the race, but he had to fight for the victory, finishing just 12 seconds ahead of second place in a time of 60:31. While he had a good day on the course, Farah didn’t accomplish his ultimate goal of breaking his own British half-marathon record of 59:32, but he didn’t seem too bothered by his time as he smiled broadly and blew kisses to the crowd when he crossed the finish line.
The Antrim Coast Half-Marathon was Farah’s second race of 2020. At his first competition of the year in Belgium, he covered 21.33K in one hour to beat Haile Gebrselassie’s 13-year-old world record by 45 metres. Going into the race, he was the clear favourite for the win, but at the halfway point, he still found himself accompanied by three other runners. The foursome passed through 10.5K in 30:38, and while Farah was certainly the most experienced of the group, he had a tough time breaking away. He ultimately did create a gap between himself and the other runners before taking the win.
Fellow Brits Marc Scott and Ben Connor finished in second and third. Scott ran 60:43, his debut at the distance, and Connor ran a PB of 60:59. The pair have moved into third and fourth on the all-time half-marathon list for Great Britain, behind Farah and his 59:32 national record and Callum Hawkins, who has a PB of 60 minutes flat.
— BBC SPORT NI (@BBCSPORTNI) September 12, 2020
Despite running two 21K races to kick off his season, Farah has said he will be focusing on shorter track races ahead of the Tokyo Olympics. He will be looking to repeat as Olympic champion in the 5,000m and 10,000m, events that he won at the 2012 and 2016 Summer Games.