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Farah Targets Grand Prix

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Mo Farah


10 February 2010

British 3000 metres indoor record holder Mo Farah will be going head to head with three-time Olympic champion Kenenisa Bekele at the Aviva Grand Prix at the National Indoor Arena (NIA) at Birmingham.

Farah, who thrilled the NIA crowd by breaking the British record last year, is hoping to run at a similar level this time around, especially with the great Ethiopian Bekele taking to the track beside him.

“I’m looking forward to competing in Birmingham, it will be great to get on the track again alongside the best in the world and benchmark myself against them to gauge my potential performance in Doha.

“It’s brilliant to get the chance of running in front of a home crowd, there is always such a fantastic atmosphere, and the crowd really spur you on which is really important in long distance.

“I have a bit of a soft spot for the NIA since my performance last year. Breaking the British record was fantastic and I would love to get close to that again, if not beat it.

“Bekele is always mentioned as the man to beat, and it’s fantastic to be able to pit myself against him with the hope being that I can give him a good challenge. I have great respect for him but at the end of the day he is just another opponent who I want to beat.”

Farah’s last race was in the snow in Edinburgh six weeks ago and he will return to Britain from winter training in Kenya specifically for his race at the Aviva Grand Prix.

A four time European medalist, he had a superb indoor season in 2009 culminating in gold over 3000m at the European Indoor Championships in Turin, Italy. This came off the back of wins at the Aviva International Match in Glasgow and Aviva Grand Prix over 3000m at the Birmingham NIA, and the UK crown over 1500m in Sheffield.

At the last World Indoor championships in 2008, Farah finished sixth in the 3000m.

In addition to Farah’s head to head with Bekele, a unique concept will kick-start the action at the National Indoor Arena for the Aviva Grand Prix this year, when BMX riders and inline skaters take on British High Jumpers in an Extreme High Jump exhibition.  At 12.30 spectators can witness for the first time the meeting of polar opposites traditional athletics and extreme sports; this short event promises to push the boundaries of the High Jump as the rules are swapped for tricks and stunts.

Tickets for the Aviva Grand Prix at the National Indoor Arena, Birmingham on Saturday 20th February are available by phone on 08000 556 056 or online at www.uka.org.uk