Great Edinburgh Cross Country: Sir Mo Farah happy to be known as 'Mo'

By Jane LewisBBC Scotland
Sir Mo Farah says he wants to leave track at the top
Great Edinburgh International Cross Country
Date: Saturday, 7 January 2017 Venue: Holyrood Park, Edinburgh
Coverage: Watch live on BBC One and online from 13:15 GMT

Two-time double Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah says he is happy to be known as 'Mo' despite receiving a knighthood.

Farah, who is competing in Saturday's Great Edinburgh International Cross Country, said: "It's Mo [not Sir]. Obviously, it's an honour to be recognised by everyone and my country."

Farah, who was second to American Garrett Heath in 2016, said: "Hopefully I'll go one better [this time].

"It's going to be an exciting race and it's nice to represent my country."

Farah says starting the new season with a cross country event will benefit his main goal this year - the World Championships in London in August, where he could win a fifth successive double of 5,000m and 10,000m titles in major championships.

The 33-year-old confirmed those races are likely to be his last as a track athlete.

"My aim is to do well on the track in London and then hopefully hang my spikes up, but we'll see.

"I'd like to be able to move towards the marathon and learn about the marathon and just understand that event.

"So I'm not completely retiring - just on the track."

Mo Farah comes second in 2016 Great Edinburgh Cross Country

Organisers are expecting around 10,000 spectators to watch the action at Holyrood Park,external-link which will stage a series of junior races from 10:15 to 13:00 GMT, before the 4 x 1km relay at 13:29, followed by the women's 6km race (14:13) and the men's 8km race at 14:50.

"Every athlete starts out running cross country; as a youngster I did and I competed in Edinburgh as a kid," Farah told BBC Scotland.

"The crowd do come out and give you great support and it's pretty amazing. In the track when they watch you they have to buy a ticket, they have to get into the stadium.

"Here they can just come along and support. You get the crowd, you get the home support and what a beautiful place to have a cross country race.

"It's also nice to be able to give something back to the people who support you."

Also competing in Edinburgh on Saturday is Scot Laura Muir, fresh from breaking the British indoor 5,000m record in Glasgow on Wednesday.

Muir captains the British team competing at Holyrood Park and Farah believes 2017 could be a big year for the 23-year-old.

"She's an amazing athlete, she's got great potential and she's learning quick," he said.

"And she's competing against the best in the world. Hopefully we can see her among the medals at the World Championships. It's not gong to be easy but she has experience of last year at the Olympics.

"I know it's not what she wanted [seventh place in Rio] but she would have learned something from that. She's a fighter - she'll go out and give 110%."

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