Mo Farah’s Tokyo Olympic dream is over after he failed in his final bid to secure the qualifying time at the British Athletics Championships in Manchester.
The four-time Olympic champion hinted at a possible retirement from track racing as he missed out on the qualifying time by almost 20 seconds, despite a runaway victory.
Having switched to the marathon following the 2017 World Championships, Farah returned to the track in a bid to defend the 10,000m title he won at London 2012 and Rio 2016 in Tokyo this summer.
His chance looked to have gone when he failed to dip under the qualifying time at the British Athletics 10,000m Championships in Birmingham earlier this month, blaming a minor ankle injury.
British Athletics agreed to put on a special invitational 10,000m on the Friday night of this weekend’s championships - which double as the main Olympic trials in most other disciplines - in order to give one of its greatest ever athletes one final chance to make the team.
Roared on by a home crowd, the 38-year-old was on target to do so in the early part of the race, but was left to run the last nine laps solo as pacemakers dropped out and finished in 27:47.04, well outside the 27:28.00 standard.
“It was quite windy, I tried to push and push and push but nine laps out I knew I was on my own,” Farah said. “It’s amazing to have the crowd once more.
“That’s all you can do as human being, you give it your all and that’s what you have. I’ve had a wonderful career, I’m very lucky to have had the long career I’ve had and I’m very grateful but that’s all I had today.”
When asked whether the race would be his last on the track, Farah added: “It’s a tough one, it’s a tough one. I’ve always said that if I can’t compete with the best I’m not just going to go there to finish in a final. I want to go there to compete and tonight just shows it wasn’t good enough.”