Double world and Olympic champion Mo Farah is to return to Tyneside to defend his Great North Run crown at the IAAF Gold Label Road Race on 13 September.
Farah won the half marathon for the first time last year in a thrilling battle with Kenya’s Mike Kigen. On the day before lining up to defend his crown on 13 September, he plans to jog around the course in the Morrisons Great North 5k and then perform the honours as official starter for the Mini Great North Run.
Farah, who defends his 5000m and 10,000m titles at the IAAF World Championships in Beijing from 22-30 August, will be attempting to become only the second British runner to win the elite men’s race for a second time in the Morrisons Great North Run.
Mike McLeod, the 1984 Olympic 10,000m silver medallist, won the first two editions of the race in 1981 and 1982. And only one other runner has successfully defended the men’s title: the late Benson Masya, who achieved back-to-back victories in 1991 and 1992.
The elite men’s field on Tyneside will include several notable international entrants: 2014 London Marathon runner-up Stanley Biwott of Kenya, South African champion Stephen Mokoka, Pan American Games 5000m champion Juan Luis Barrios of Mexico, and Japan’s Masato Kikuchi.
Organisers for the IAAF