Mo Farah to skip world indoor championships to prep for Olympics
Double Olympic and World champion Mo Farah will skip the IAAF World Indoor Track and Field Championships next March in preparation for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Farah, 32, expects his lone indoor race to be the 3,000-meter run at the Glasgow Indoor Grand Prix on Feb. 20 in Scotland. He will open the 2016 campaign with the Great Edinburgh International Cross-Country race on Jan. 9.
“The 3,000-meter in Glasgow is likely to be my only indoor race of 2016 and I want to make it a good one,” Farah told several British reporters.
Farah did not compete at last year's IAAF World Indoor Championships in Sopot, Poland. During the 2015 indoor season, He set his first world record by running two miles in 8:04.03 on Feb. 21 at the Birmingham Indoor Grand Prix. He has not competed at world indoors since finishing fourth in the 3,000-meter run at the 2012 championships in Istanbul.
Watch Farah's world record run below:
The World Indoor Championships will be held in Portland, Ore., where Farah trains with the Nike Oregon Project under head coach Alberto Salazar. A joint report by ProPublica and BBC alleged that Salazar pushed the boundaries on doping rules to gain a competitive advantage by encouraging the use of prescription medication and therapeutic use exemptions. The report also implicates Olympic silver medalist Galen Rupp in the doping scandal, though both have refuted the allegations.
Farah was not named in the report but questioned his coach before deciding to stay under his watch. An independent investigation by UK Athletics also cleared Salazar of any wrongdoing. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency is conducting its own investigation into allegations involving Salazar's training program.
At the 2016 Summer Games, Farah will attempt to become the first man to defend his gold medals in the men's 5,000-meters and 10,000-meters since Lasse Viren won gold in both events at the 1972 and 1976 Olympics.
- Christopher Chavez