Four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah and Sifan Hassan both broke the one-hour world record at the Memorial Van Damme meet. The meet is part of the Diamond League series and was held at an empty King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels, Belgium, on Friday.
Hassan first ran 18.930 kilometres, thus going past the previous record of 18.517km set by Ethiopia’s Dire Tune at the Ostrava Golden Spike meet in 2008. In the final race of the meet, Farah covered 21.330km, thus breaking Haile Gebrselassie’s 13-year-old record of 21.285km.
Farah was running with his training partner Bashir Abdi who challenged the British long distance running great until the closing stages of the race. Abdi even took the lead with five minutes left, but Farah eventually ended the race eight metres ahead. This was Farah’s first track race since 2017 after spending two years as a full-time marathon runner. He plans to defend his 10,000m gold at the Tokyo Olympics next year.
“I’m very happy to break the world record today. What an amazing way to do it and to show people what is possible,” said the 37-year-old Farah after the race.
“An hour is long. It takes a lot of concentration and focus. After the first half I found my rhythm. I’m really happy with this record,” Hassan said.