Saturday, October 8, 2016

Mo Farah Scores Greatest Victory of His Career

by Brett Larner
photos by Tsukasa Kawarai

In a career teeming to overflow with double medals at the Olympics and World Championships and an unprecedented triple crown of Great North Run wins earned to varying degrees, Great Britain's Mo Farah staked the ultimate claim to the title of Greatest of All Time with the single most important victory of his career, a win at Saturday's Akasaka 5-Chome Mini Marathon.

Running on a hilly 900 m four-loop course around and through broadcaster TBS' Akasaka studios as part of its semi-annual All-Star Kanshasai variety show, Farah overcame a 5 minute, 55 second handicap start to run down a cavalcade of Japan's finest models and comedians for the win, catching the last trio led by entertainer Kenji Moriwaki on the final uphill run up to the studio.

Farah covered the 3.6 km course in roughly 13:40.  His win was a shot across the bows of Kenenisa Bekele and Eliud Kipchoge and a message to them and all other pretenders: anyone can win an Olympic gold medal or skim sub-2:03 territory in London or Berlin, but you haven't really made it until you're the king of Akasaka.

photos © 2016 Tsukasa Kawarai, all rights reserved
text © 2016 Brett Larner, all rights reserved


TokyoRacer said...

I agree. Akasaka is tougher than the Olympics. In the Olympics, you don't have to give anyone a handicap.

Anonymous said...

Brett- thank you for enlightening me! As a Brit having been in Tokyo for precisely one hour last night, I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me when I saw Farah barely 30 yards away running around a city block with what we call random punters. A quick visit here (which I originally learned of via Marathon Talk's Martin and Tom) quickly set me straight. Great blog.