• Athletics

Farah upset by 'cashing in' accusations

ESPN staff
April 19, 2013
Mo Farah insists he is competing in the London Marathon with a long-term plan © PA Photos

Double Olympic champion Mo Farah has denied that his appearance in Sunday's London Marathon is part of an attempt to profit off his current status.

Farah is due to race in this weekend's London Marathon, running half the distance ahead of a tilt at the title over the full distance in 2014. And the 30-year-old insists it is the prospect of a title in 12 months' time that is driving him, not the appearance fee he is rumoured to be picking up for his 13-mile performance on Sunday.

Farah says he has been offended and upset by such suggestions.

"When you become Olympic champion and everything else when you go into a race, yes there are rewards. But for someone to say he's only doing it for those rewards is wrong and that hurts," Farah said.

"It has come as a bit of a shock to me. Every race I do, am I only doing it for rewards?

"This race, in my heart, I'm here to learn about the course, learn about everything else. My aim is to come out here and learn about the race and get used to the course so that next year I'm ready to go. It's a no-brainer when you think about it.

"That's one of the things that hurts. I genuinely enjoy my athletics. It's not nice but all the people who know me and know who I am know I'm not the sort of person who would do that."

Farah does not believe dropping out at the halfway stage will hurt the integrity of the race.

"I don't want to destroy the race for the normal runners by being at the front and surging and then dropping back and then picking up the pace again," he said. "That's out of respect. You have to respect the guys who are out here."

The Brit also reiterated that he never had any intention of pulling out of the event, despite the recent tragedy in Boston which raised security fears for the London event.

"All my support goes to the people in Boston," he added. "But this is home for me so I've got to feel comfortable. For me, this is the place to be.

"I've just got to go out there and do what I normally do. I will not be thinking about anything other than racing. This is comfortable for me and I am just quite excited about the race.

"London's a great city. It's where I grew up, where I've done everything, so I know better than anyone else. "For me there was never a concern at all (about competing).

"I've got great memories of the London Olympics. What we did as a nation in terms of everything was incredible and I believe we can do a similar job to that."

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