Photo Credit: Getty Images

Reigning Olympic Champion over the 5000m/10,000m, Mo Farah put up an outstanding performance in what was his final indoor race, smashing the European Record in the men’s 5000m to set a new National Record (NR) of 13:09.16 at the Muller Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham on Saturday.

Known for his record-breaking feats, the reigning World Champion over the distance inspired all 10 finalists to Personal Bests (PB), with the Top 4 finishers setting NRs, while the remaining six raced to PBs in the event.

Following in 2nd place was Kenyan-born Bahraini athlete, Albert Rop, whose time of 13:09.43 now stands as the new Asian Record in the 5000m. Frenchman Morhad Amdouni was 3rd in an NR of 13:10.60.

Farah wasn’t the only athlete that raced to a European Record at the final IAAF Indoor Tour meeting. Fellow British athlete, Laura Muir continued her record-breaking performance in 2017, capping her Indoor season with a new European Record of 2:31.93 in the 1000m – the third ever fastest time over that distance.

Only Mozambique’s Maria Mutola has gone faster with her times of 2:30.94 and 2:31.23 set in 1999 and 1996 respectively. Muir already set an Indoor NR of 14:49.12 in the 5000m, and a European Indoor Record of 8:26.41 in the 3000m earlier in the season.

The 23-year old set the pace for the remaining finalists to run lifetime bests as well, as 2nd and 3rd place finishers Kate Grace and Sanne Verstegen set times of 2:36.97 (PB) and 2:38.72 (NR) respectively.

Double sprint Olympic Champion Elaine Thompson kicked off the season by racing to a scorching World Lead (WL), Stadium Record and PB of 6.98s to win the 60m ahead of compatriots Gayon Evans (7.17s) and Christania Williams (7.18s, PB).  World Indoor Champion Barbara Pierre was 4th in 7.20s, as Britain’s Asha Philip returned a time of 7.24s to finish 5th.

USA’s Ronnie Baker beat veteran Kim Collins to the men’s 60m title, posting a superior time of 6.55s as Collins and Richard Kilty both followed in 6.58s.

Current World Champion in the women’s 400m Hurdles, Zuzana Hejnova fired a note of warning to her opponents by racing to an SB of 51.77s to win the 400m ahead of home girl Laviai Nielsen (51.90s, PB) and Shamier Little (52.11s), as Eilidh Doyle was 4th in 52.33s.

The men’s event was won by Pavel Maslak in 45.89s, as Luguelin Santos (46.16s), Luka Janezic (46.38s) and Bralon Taplin (46.38s) followed.

Meanwhile Britain’s Andrew Pozzi sped to a WL of 7.43s to win the men’s 60m Hurdles. This is the hurdler’s fifth world-leading mark in 2017. David King and former Olympic Champion Aries Merritt finished in 2nd and 3rd respectively with 7.63s and 7.70s.

Lorraine Ugen inspired a 1-2 for Great Britain in the women’s Long Jump, posting a Season’s Best (SB) of 6.76m as Jazmin Sawyers placed 2nd with a PB of 6.71m.

Beijing 2008 Silver medallist Godfrey Mokoena won the men’s event in a distance of 7.99m. He was followed by Tyrone Smith (7.83m, NR), Fabrice Lapierre (7.76m) and Jeff Henderson (7.72m, SB).

Rio 2016 Silver medallist Hellen Obiri dominated a strong field in the women’s 3000m, storming to an NR of 8:29.41 to finish ahead of the pack. Such was the swiftness of the race that Dutch record holder Sifan Hassan also set an NR of 8:30.76 to place 2nd, as Ethiopian Dawit Seyaum finished 3rd with a PB of 8:37.65s.

In fact 12 of the 14 finalists in the race either raced to NRs or SBs, with the exception of USA’s Shannon Rowbury who finished a distant 8th (8:45.48) and 14th place Birtukan Adamu who set an SB of 9:03.99.

Photo Credit: Getty Images
Photo Credit: Getty Images

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Yemi Olus is a Senior Sports Writer at Making of Champions. She has a bias for athletics and was previously a Sports Reporter at the National Mirror, where she hosted a weekly column ‘On the Track with Yemi Olus’ for over two years. A self-acclaimed ‘athletics junkie’, she has covered national and international events live, such as the National Sports Festival and the African Athletics Championships, and has also freelanced for the Athletics Federation of Nigeria (AFN). Yemi holds a BA in Public Administration from Ahmadu Bello University .

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