Four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah broke the one-hour world record on his return to the track at Friday’s Diamond League meeting in Brussels.
Farah ran 21,330m, improving on the record of 21,285m set by Haile Gebrselassie in 2007.
It is the 37-year-old Briton’s first world record outdoors.
“It isn’t supposed to be easy to break a world record, but I can tell you that it was really hard. The record stood for a very long time,” said Farah.
“So that says a lot. I was very excited to be back on the track. My first meet back on the track was what was driving me.”
In the rarely run one-hour race, athletes try to cover as much distance as possible in 60 minutes.
Farah switched to road running after the Rio Olympics but was returning to the track in his bid to compete in the 10,000m at next year’s postponed Tokyo Games.
Competing for the first time since October’s Chicago Marathon, Farah pulled away alongside Belgium’s Bashir Abdi with 30 minutes left.
The pair’s effort looked in doubt as they fell behind Gebrselassie’s record pace with no fans in the stadium to drive them on, but they went ahead again as the final quarter of the race began.
Abdi briefly took the lead, but in the end six-time world champion Farah kicked away and won the race with ease.
He completed over 53 laps at an average pace of 67 seconds per lap to become the 12th athlete to hold the record.
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