The great Sir Mo Farah will race in London for the final time of his career at The Big Half on Sunday 3 September, bidding farewell to competitive racing in a city where he enjoyed some of the greatest moments in British sporting history.
Farah, the most decorated athlete in British track and field history, announced at April’s TCS London Marathon that 2023 would be his final year before retirement, bringing an end to a glittering athletics career that has included four Olympic Games gold medals and six World Championship victories.
Many of Farah’s most famous successes have come in his hometown of London including two gold medals at the 2012 Olympic Games when he was part of the historic Super Saturday in the Olympic Stadium. He also won a gold medal in the 10,000m at the 2017 World Championships in London, signing off his major championships career in style.
Farah started his career as a junior runner in London and won the London Mini Marathon twice in 1999 and 2000. He has also created history by winning the Vitality London 10,000 a record seven times between 2009 and 2019, whilst his London Marathon career high came in 2018 when he sprinted down The Mall to rapturous cheers from the London crowds, finishing in third place.
He has also won The Big Half a record three times, including the first ever edition in 2018 and most recently in 2022. He will return to the streets of London looking to become the first athlete to win the event, which is known as London’s community half marathon, for a record fourth time.
Farah said: “I’m excited to run my last ever London race at The Big Half. It will be bittersweet, knowing it will be the last time I race competitively in my hometown but it’s always such a great day and I know the London crowds will be cheering me on, as they always do. I look forward to being back in London and hope to bring home the win one final time.”
Spencer Barden, Head of Elite Athletes at London Marathon Events, organisers of The Big Half, said: “It’s fantastic to have Sir Mo leading the field at this year’s The Big Half. Mo has had a phenomenal career and everyone at London Marathon Events wishes him all the best in his retirement. Before that though, we hope he signs off his racing career in London with another record-breaking win at The Big Half.”
Farah will be joined by an elite field to be announced later in the summer, all competing for a place in the 2023 World Athletics Road Running Championships Half Marathon in Latvia this October. The Big Half was announced earlier this year as UK Athletics official trial race for the championships. The first three British men and women to finish at The Big Half with the qualifying times (62:30 for men and 71:30 for women) will guarantee their places in the Great Britain team in Riga, Latvia on Sunday 1 October.
More than 15,000 participants are expected to take part in The Big Half, London’s community half marathon, which also includes The Big Mile, a family-friendly one-mile event, and the New Balance Big Relay in which teams of four complete 5K each of the half marathon route. The event is a celebration of the diversity of London and the communities of the four boroughs the route passes through: Tower Hamlets, Southwark, Lewisham and Greenwich. Entries for all events are still open. For more information please visit The Big Half website here.
The event starts close to Tower Bridge and finishes beside the historic Cutty Sark in Greenwich.