Birmingham Grand Prix: Record-hungry Mo Farah takes big bite out of Steve Ovett’s mark

Runner shatters vett’s 36-year-old British record over two miles at the Birmingham Grand Prix

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The Independent Online

Mo Farah marked his first appearance on a British track in more than a year by claiming his eighth national record – and then declared his struggles this season had made him hungrier than ever for more success.

Farah shattered Steve Ovett’s 36-year-old British record over two miles at the Birmingham Grand Prix yesterday, powering home in 8min 07.85sec to blow the middle distance great’s mark of 8:13.51 out of the water; it was also a European record. The double Olympic, world and European champion’s desire to add another record to his growing collection was clear as he pulled away from the field from way out and came home just shy of 15 seconds clear of his closest rival.

Londoner Farah, 31, said: “Early on I felt a bit tired and then as I got into it I just felt better and better. I kept looking at the clock and thinking, ‘I can do it, I can do it’.”

He has one more race this season – the Great North Run next month – before taking a break ahead of focusing on the track, and the World Championships in Beijing, next year.

Lynsey Sharp was equally impressive in winning over 800m at the Diamond League meeting at Alexander Stadium.The Scot, silver medallist at the Commonwealths and Europeans, gained revenge on the Kenyan who pipped her to gold in Glasgow, the world champion Eunice Sum, finishing strongly to claim victory in 1:59.14.

World champion Christine Ohuruogu, who found herself in the unusual position of not being among the medals in Zurich, won the 400m in 51.40.

Eilidh Child again had to settle for second to Kaliese Spencer, the Jamaican who beat her to the Commonwealth title, in the 400m hurdles.

Greg Rutherford, who has added Commonwealth and European gold to his Olympic long-jump crown this summer, finished fourth with a best leap of 8.04m.

David Rudisha missed out on a new world best in the rarely-run 600m, but still produced a dominant display of front-running to take the victory in 1:13.71.

Meanwhile, Usain Bolt has decided to end his injury-plagued season early, having competed in just three races in 2014. Organisers for Thursday’s Diamond League meeting in Zurich said the Jamaican sprint legend had withdrawn from the 100m and will not compete again this season.