Tag: Russia

Long-Distance Runner Mo Farah Wins World 5,000-Meter Title to Claim Historic Double-Double

Mo Farah
Mo Farah, right, holds off his rivals to win the 5,000m world title in Moscow. Photograph: Cameron Spencer/Getty Images
This was Mo Farah‘s immortal race: the victory he called “the sweetest by far”, the triumph that thrust him deeper into the realm of athletics‘ gods. Under cooling Moscow skies Farah fended off a sustained counterattack from Hagos Gebrhiwet and Isiah Kiplangat Koech to win his fifth global title, two more than any British athlete in history. He also became only the second man, after Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele, to achieve the double-double of 5,000m and 10,000m golds at the Olympics and the following world championships. This is the company Farah now keeps.

But it was harder than last year: Farah admitted so himself. The teeth had to be gritted and clamped with 100m to go as greyhounds from Kenya and Ethiopia sniffed out and scampered after their prey. His battle roar was also delayed until moments before the line, when his lungs demanded release and he finally accepted that victory was safe. Then came the familiar gestures: eyes kindled and hands open in astonished glee before his body flopped on the track, tension escaping like air from a popped balloon after a job well done.

“I never thought in my career I would achieve something like this,” said Farah, who won 5,000m gold in 13min 26.98sec, a step ahead of Gebrhiwet and Koech who took silver and bronze in the same time of 13:27.26sec. “This was very tough – it was all left to the last two laps and I had a lot of pressure. It was hard this year, harder than last year.”

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Obama: Russia Has “Big Stake in Making Sure” Olympics Work for LGBT Community

1375839549000-AFP-521918111-1308062140_4_3In an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, President Barack Obama on Tuesday night said that he expected Russia to welcome gay and lesbian athletes to the 2014 Sochi Olympics because the country has “a big stake in making sure the Olympics work.”  The conversation stemmed from a question Leno asked about the treatment of the LGBT community in Russia, which Leno characterized as a place where “homosexuality is against the law.”

A top Russian government official recently stated that, even during the Olympics, the country would enforce a new law that prohibits “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations around minors.” The law, signed by Russian president Vladimir Putin in June, also bans public events that promote gay rights and public displays of affection by same-sex couples.

The International Olympic Committee has stated publicly that athletes and visitors attending the 2014 Sochi Games in Russia will not be affected by the anti-gay legislation.  “I mean, this seems like Germany,” Leno said. “Let’s round up the Jews, let’s round up the gays, let’s round up the blacks. I mean, it starts with that. You round up people who you don’t — I mean, why is not more of the world outraged at this?”

President Obama responded that he had “no patience for countries that try to treat gays or lesbians or transgender persons in ways that intimidate them or are harmful to them.”

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