Belfast Telegraph

Emotional Farah strikes gold as Bolt powers on

By Nick Mashiter

Sir Mo Farah said it was "amazing" to complete the first stage of his golden track finale after a thrilling defence of his 10,000m title at the World Championships at London Stadium last night.

The 34-year-old, who will retire from the track later this month, won in 26 minutes 49.51 seconds to claim his sixth world title.

Farah shrugged off continued doping allegations to mount a second defence of the 10,000m in London after victories in Moscow in 2013 and Beijing two years ago.

"It was amazing. I had to get my head around it and I got a bit emotional at the start. I had to get in the zone," he said.

"It wasn't an easy race. I work on everything and it's been a long journey.

"What a way to end my career in London. It's special," added Farah, who will bid for the double when he goes for gold in the 5,000m next Saturday.

"I knew at 12 laps to go when they went hard from there I knew it was going to be tough. It was about believing in my sprint finish and knowing that I have been in that position before. It helped a lot having that experience.

"That was a special moment for me. I miss spending time with them (my family).

"To have my family on the track is very special. Anything is possible if you train hard," added Farah.

Usain Bolt was left furious with his performance, despite moving a step closer to a golden goodbye as he cruised through the 100m heats.

Back at the stadium where the Jamaican declared himself a "living legend" after retaining his 100m and 200m titles at the 2012 Olympics, the 30-year-old had to recover from an awful start to win his heat in 10.07 seconds.

Bolt, who is bringing the curtain down on his glittering career at these championships, was met with the customary huge cheers whenever he appeared on the big screen.

He whispered "number one" when the camera panned to him on the start line, but the shake of the head at the finish was proof he was less than happy with his run.

Bolt's start has been his chief - perhaps only - problem throughout his career, no great surprise for a sprinter who stands 6ft 5in.

"That was very bad," Bolt said.

"I stumbled coming out of the blocks. I'm not very fond of these blocks. I think these are the worst ones I've ever experienced. I have to get this start together because I can't keep doing this.

"It's shaky. When I did my warm-up it (the blocks) pushed back. It is just not what I am used to, not as sturdy or firm."

Meanwhile, Ciara Mageean endured a nightmare race in last night's 1,500m first round heat.

The Portaferry runner - Ireland's top middle distance athlete - was never up with the leaders in an admittedly tough heat and eventually finished 13th in what was for her a modest time of four minutes 10.60 seconds.

This was a particularly bitter blow for the 25-year-old as she has been enjoying her best season ever.

Genzebe Dibaba of Ethiopia appeared to stroll across the line for victory in 4.02.67 just ahead of Caster Semenya. GB's Jessica Judd celebrated with a PB in sixth place of 4.03.73.

A dejected Ciara said: "That was a disaster.

"I have been going so well this year but my legs just wouldn't move when it mattered.

"I just can't grasp what when wrong. While this was a tough heat with six to qualify I should have made the semis. I felt really good coming into these championships and I just can't comprehend why my legs wouldn't switch on."

Other Irish athletes competing this weekend include Rio Olympics fourth placer Thomas Barr in the 400m hurdles, Brian Gregan in the 400m and Mark English in the 800m.

Belfast Telegraph

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