THE last British winner of the London Marathon is unsure if Mo Farah will be able to follow in his foot-steps this weekend.

Basildon’s Eamonn Martin claimed a memorable victory in the capital back in 1993.

But he fears it may be a ‘step too far’ for Farah as he moves up from racing on the track.

“Mo obviously has heaps of ability and we’ve seen that on the track but my head just says I think this might be a step too far for him on Sunday,” said Martin.

“He won’t be far off and he’ll keep the crowds excited because he’ll be in contention but it’s a very strong field he’s facing.

“There are four very strong Kenyan runners including last year’s winner Daniel Wanjiru.

“He’s still only 25 so he has a few years on Mo and he’ll still be hungry to win.

“There’s a strong Ethopian too and they will be looking to blunt the finishing speed of Mo.

“It’s going to be interesting but my honest opinion is it might just be too much for Mo at the moment.

“But that’s not to say he can’t learn from it and come back to have another go at it.”

Farah won four Olympic golds on the track before opting to race on the roads from this season onwards.

And Martin would love the 35-year-old to continue his success in the marathon.

“People will often ask me if I want there to another British winner and my answer is always of course I do,” said Martin.

“I’ll always be a London Marathon winner and that’s great but I don’t think it reflects well on British distance running that there hasn’t been another winner for so long.

“I would like that to end and if Mo does it then great.

“We’ve had a couple of outside chances over the years and it will be very interesting on Sunday.”

But Martin feels Farah may find it tough to match his rivals.

“Mo has had great success on the track but his races have always been won by the smallest of margins and that might be his undoing this weekend,” said Martin.

“The marathon is over 26.2 miles so it’s a big step up but I don’t agree with people who are saying he’s left it too late.

"He’s virtually the same age I was when I moved up to the marathon so I don’t think that’s an issue.”


EAMONN Martin still remembers his London Marathon success joy with great fondness - but struggles to believe it was 25 years ago!

Martin ran himself into Great Britain running folklore with his first place finish at the 1993 event.

And the 59-year-old can still vividly remember the whole race.

“I have strong, vivid memories about that day,” said Martin.

“It was actually my first ever marathon and I just remember the leading group kept on getting cut in size and every time it happened it boosted my confidence.

“I knew I had a strong finish and everything went to plan so it was a great day.

“I struggle to believe it was 25 years ago but my son Eamonn junior was born the Thursday before the marathon that year so every time he has a birthday it’s my own personal reminder!”

However, Martin’s victory was also down to plenty of hard work in training.

“I left no stone unturned,” said Martin.

“I read numerous books about the psychology of racing and practised everything including having my mates leaning out of cars to give me drinks when I  ran past.

"I went through everything and covered all sides to make sure I won.”