Today, 16th February, St Mary’s University, Twickenham, officially named its athletics track in honour of its most famous alumnus, Sir Mo Farah.
At a ceremony attended by Mo, leading figures from British athletics came together at St Mary’s Strawberry Hill Campus to celebrate his astounding career and long relationship with the University. Having completed a quadruple-double - winning four double titles at successive Olympic and World Championships - Mo has remained unbeaten on the track at major international Championships since 2011.
Mo trained at St Mary’s from 2001-2011, where he was awarded a scholarship to the Endurance Performance and Coaching Centre (EPACC) and continued to train regularly at the facility until he moved to Oregon, USA. Today, Mo returned to meet with young athletes from the local community. He was also able to meet with the current generation of athletes from the Endurance Performance and Coaching Centre. Sir Mo Farah said, “It is such an honour to be here today and to have this track named after me – thank-you so much, St Mary’s! I have very fond memories of my time here as I developed from being a talented junior to a world-class athlete. St. Mary’s and all the people associated with the EPACC have been a big part of my journey. I really hope that these facilities continue to inspire the next generation of young British athletes.”
St Mary’s Vice-Chancellor Francis Campbell said, “To have something named after you is a tremendous recognition of one’s achievements. It serves to inspire future generations to expand on the accomplishments of the honoured person. “Whilst Mo has set the bar very high, I am sure that the naming of our athletics track will inspire our current and future generations of student athletes to go out and achieve all they can on the world stage.” The Sir Mo Farah Athletics track welcomed ten nations during London 2012, in addition to countless other leading international athletes. As the home to St Mary’s EPACC, it has helped train numerous distance runners that have been selected to compete at Olympic level producing 35 selections across the last four Games.
St Mary’s Director of Sport Andrew Reid-Smith said, “Mo was the first runner on the St Mary’s endurance programme. He trained at the University for ten years on his way to becoming one of the greatest distance runners ever. We are very proud of Mo’s achievements and it is a fitting tribute that the track, one that he’s spent so much time on and that supports beginners, talented athletes and GB runners alike, is being named after him.”