The world’s greatest distance runner Sir Mo Farah announced today that he will return to the Virgin Money London Marathon in 2018.
Farah retired from track competition this summer with an historic record of 10 global gold medals at World and Olympic Games over 5,000m and 10,000m.
Now he wants to write his name into history on the roads, starting with his home town race and the world’s greatest marathon, the Virgin Money London Marathon, on Sunday 22 April.
“I am thrilled to be starting this new chapter in my career with the Virgin Money London Marathon,” said Farah, speaking after winning the Great North Run for a fourth successive time today (Sunday). “I can’t wait to start a new adventure racing on the roads in 2018, starting with the world’s greatest marathon.
“The London Marathon is my home race and it is so special to me. The previous times I have taken part (in 2013 and 2014) were amazing. The atmosphere on the course was unbelievable. Just like at the 2012 Olympic Games in London and at the World Championships this summer, those incredible home crowds really do give me that extra motivation. I can’t wait to experience that again next year.
“When I decided to concentrate solely on the roads from 2018 I knew that I wanted this to be my first marathon. The London Marathon has been a great supporter of me over the years. It doesn’t feel that long ago that I was running the Mini Marathon and in my early years the London Marathon provided me with crucial funding support.
“I can’t wait for next April and will be training as hard as ever over the coming months to ensure I’m in the best shape possible.”
Farah, 34, first ran the Virgin Money London Marathon in 2013 when he took part in just the first half of the race to gain experience of running a major city marathon.
He returned the following year when he finished in eighth place in a time of 2 hours 8 minutes and 21 seconds.
Hugh Brasher, Event Director of the Virgin Money London Marathon, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Mo has chosen to start this new chapter of his career at the Virgin Money London Marathon.
“Mo’s success on the track is legendary and now his focus has moved to the roads, we can’t wait to see what he will do over the marathon distance, especially in front of home crowds. I’m sure the whole country is just as excited and will turn out in force to support him on Sunday 22 April.”
SIR MO FARAH CAREER HIGHLIGHTS
Ten global gold medals:
Four Olympic gold medals (10,000m 2012 and 2016; 5,000m 2012 and 2016)
Six World Championships gold medals (5,000m 2011, 2013, 2015; 10,000m 2013, 2015, 2017)
Five European Championships gold medals (10,000m 2010, 2014; 5,000m 2010, 2012, 2014)
Two World Championships silver medals (10,000m 2011, 5,000m 2017)
British record holder over five distances: 1500m (3.28.81), 3,000m (7.32.62), 5,000m (12.53.11), 10,000m (26.46.57) and Half Marathon (59.32)
Marathon career: finished eighth (2:08:21) in his only full marathon, the 2014 Virgin Money London Marathon