Great South Run chief aims to go for Mo

Mo Farah celebrates winning the 2009 Great South Run
Mo Farah celebrates winning the 2009 Great South Run
Anja Fairbairn. Picture: Paul Smith

Masters title has Anja set fair for next target

Have your say

MO FARAH takes the adulation of the city of Portsmouth after storming to 2012 Olympic glory in London.

That is the vision of Bupa Great South Run race director Colin Goater.

It may be the stuff of dreams but Farah is already a Great South Run favourite, with victory to his name in 2009.

World Championship glory followed for Britain’s top distance runner in 2011.

And if all goes to plan in the capital this summer, Farah will be crowned Olympic champion.

What next then?

How about a return to the city where he has already etched his name as a sporting hero for a stunning lap of honour?

‘Wouldn’t it be lovely to get Mo back? He is such a lovely guy and I wish him every success at the Olympics,’ said Goater.

‘I would love to think he is going to win an Olympic gold medal – he is certainly capable of doing it.’

With the 2012 Great South Run on October 28 following closely off the back of the London Olympics, athletics in England could be running on the crest of a wave.

And although Goater admits he will face a fight to sign up the likes of Farah off the back of a successful Olympics, it is something he is keen to do.

Goater added: ‘If Mo is a medallist, and let’s hope he is, it might be difficult to get hold of him.

‘The top athletes have a programme to work to and they have sponsors. It is never quite as easy as we might think.

‘But if Mo wants to do it, we want him here without any doubt.’

One Olympic medallist who will definitely be pounding the Portsmouth streets is Wendy Sly.

The 1984 Olympian won silver in the 3,000m in Los Angeles and she is hoping there could be a repeat of those great times for British athletics this year.

She said: ‘I am very proud of being part of an era of British athletics which was just wonderful.

‘As a young person, my parents got a colour television in time for the Olympics in 1972 and I was inspired totally by those games.

‘2012 is a great event for this country and we should all be proud.’

Sly, 52, who is involved in managing the GB cross country team, including Hampshire athlete and 2011 Great South Run star Charlotte Purdue, will be taking part in her first Great South Run in Portsmouth, the city she often visited as a child.

‘You have got a wonderful world class 10-mile race down here.

‘My grandad was from Portsmouth and I used to come down here as a child.

‘I’m excited. I want to do it in a decent time and enjoy it.’