Sir Mo Farah took his sixth victory in the Vitality London 10,000 on Bank Holiday Monday (28 May) securing the British road 10k title to add to his UK record in the Virgin Money London Marathon last month. Steph Twell achieved her first success in the women’s race as a record 14,475 completed the iconic course, which starts on The Mall and finishes in front of Buckingham Palace.
Olympic legend Sir Mo Farah (Newham & Essex Beagles) was competing in his second 10K race in nine days, having won the Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run (20 May). He tested the pack at 4k with a surge to the front before treating the enthusiastic crowds to a trademark sprint to stop the clock on 29:44.
Duathlete Richard Allen (Aldershot, 29:48) and former triathlete Matthew Sharp (Team Spy, 29:50) hung on for the remaining UK individual medals to illustrate the latent talent within the multi-sport disciplines.
After the race Farah said: “I’m happy with that. It’s nice to be able to get a good run here in London. I’ve raced here so many times but it’s nice to be able to win. My shape is not great but a win is a win and I’m happy with that even if the time was a little bit slow. It was nice to be able to run with the club runners.”
On a second successive warm and sunny day in the capital, Steph Twell (Aldershot, 32:34) dominated the women's race from the start signalled by Vitality ambassadors Dame Jessica Ennis-Hill and Lord Sebastian Coe. Gemma Steel (Charnwood, 33:00) and defending champion Jo Pavey (Exeter, 33:12), returning to action after tearing her plantar fascia last year, were the nearest challengers.
Twell seemed more excited by her performance than the men's champion: “I’m buzzing. The atmosphere today was electric,” she said. “With so many great club runners running, I really tried to tail on to the back of the guys and make sure I bridged the gap. I also had a race on my hands with Jo, Tracy Barlow and Gemma very early on. I’ve been away for three months so to start here in London is epic. It has really set off my season well even though it’s on the road.”
There were 14,475 finishers to make this the largest Vitality London 10,000 so far, smashing the 2017 record of 12,438 by more than 2,000 runners.
Full race details and results available through runABC South race listings