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Haile Gebrselassie press conference in Birmingham, England

Haile Gebrselassie press conference in Birmingham, England
11 February, 1998
Duncan Mackay interviews Haile Gebrselassie for IAAF On-Line

Q: You are hoping to break Eamonn Coghlan’s ten-year-old world record of 4:54.07 for the 2000m here on Sunday. What are your chances?
A: I cannot say I will definitely break the record but I will try. I am in good shape and my training has been going well.

Q: You and Daniel Komen have enjoyed a fierce rivalry during the last two seasons. How would you describe your relationship?
A: It is not bad. In fact our relationship is very good. There is no confrontation off the track but we are fighting on it. The Kenyans are my best friends because we are from the same neighbourhood.

Q: When will you next race Komen?
A: I hope it will be in Zurich because that is a very important meeting for both of us.

Q: What are your main aims for the summer?
A: I want to get back my records for 5000 and 10,000 metres. I lost them both in one hour in Brussels last August. I thought this is not my day.

Q: Will you run in the world cross country championships in Marrakech next month?
A: No. I don’t like to run the world cross country because my style is very bad for cross country. My style is like a sprinter because I run on my toes. When it is muddy my foot disappears into the ground.

Q: Do you have any plans to do a marathon?
A: Not until after the 2000 Olympics. In fact, I have already done one - a long time ago at altitude in Addis Ababa when I ran 2:48 and finished 99th. I hope I will do a bit better next time.