Haile Gebrselassie, Mo Farah, Kenenisa Bekele take top spots in Great North Run

Haile Gebrselassie, Mo Farah, and Kenenisa Bekele, who have 12 world and seven Olympic titles between them, raced together for the first 19 kilometers before Bekele attacked on a steep portion to leave his two rivals behind.

AP
Ethiopia's Kenenisa Bekele (c.) celebrates winning with second placed Britain's Mo Farah (l.) and third placed Ethiopia's Haile Gebrselasie at the end of the Great North Run, in Newcastle, England, Sunday Sept. 15, 2013.

Kenenisa Bekele of Ethiopia held off a late challenge from local favorite Mo Farah to win the Great North Run on Sunday in a thrilling finish.

Bekele, competing in his first competitive half marathon, made his move with under two kilometers to go but had to fend off a charge from Farah in the last 400 meters as the British runner failed to pip his rival on the line.

Bekele won the race by one second from Farah. Ethiopian great Haile Gebrselassie was third.

"I'm disappointed but I was second to a great athlete," said Farah. "I thought I could come back. It came to the last 200m, right to the line. It was a great race and a great finish."

Farah and Bekele are the only two men to have held the 5,000 and 10,000-meter titles from both the Olympics and the world championships at the same time. Farah won the long-distance double at the London Olympics and at the worlds in Moscow last month.

More than 50,000 people including retired footballer Robbie Savage and singer Mel C took part in the popular race first started in 1981 in wet and windy conditions.

Farah, Bekele and Gebrselassie, who have 12 world and seven Olympic titles between them, raced together for the first 19 kilometers before Bekele attacked on a steep portion to leave his two rivals behind.

The 40-year-old Gebrselassie was then dropped by Farah, who ultimately lacked the speed needed to catch and pass Bekele as the Ethiopian rider crossed the line with a smile on his face.

Kenya's Priscah Jeptoo won the women's race just four seconds short of the record time. Meseret Defar and Tirunesh Dibaba of Ethiopia were second and third, respectively.

You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Dear Reader,

About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

“Many things that end up” being meaningful, writes social scientist Joseph Grenny, “have come from conference workshops, articles, or online videos that began as a chore and ended with an insight. My work in Kenya, for example, was heavily influenced by a Christian Science Monitor article I had forced myself to read 10 years earlier. Sometimes, we call things ‘boring’ simply because they lie outside the box we are currently in.”

If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

But you know what? We change lives. And I’m going to argue that we change lives precisely because we force open that too-small box that most human beings think they live in.

The Monitor is a peculiar little publication that’s hard for the world to figure out. We’re run by a church, but we’re not only for church members and we’re not about converting people. We’re known as being fair even as the world becomes as polarized as at any time since the newspaper’s founding in 1908.

We have a mission beyond circulation, we want to bridge divides. We’re about kicking down the door of thought everywhere and saying, “You are bigger and more capable than you realize. And we can prove it.”

If you’re looking for bran muffin journalism, you can subscribe to the Monitor for $15. You’ll get the Monitor Weekly magazine, the Monitor Daily email, and unlimited access to CSMonitor.com.