Northallerton’s Marc Scott is hoping his big race experience can lead him into a World Championship final alongside Sir Mo Farah in London.
Farah will once again lead British hopes on the track when he begins his final track event at a major championships at the Olympic Stadium tonight.
The four-time Olympic champion takes centre stage in the opening heat at 8.05pm before Scott and fellow British athlete Andrew Butchart attempt to make Saturday’s showpiece in the second.
Scott, who, like Farah, trains in America, only claimed a place in the British squad in the final wave of selection two weeks ago having ran a new personal best of 13.22.37 to hit the qualifying mark in Belgium late last month.
The 23-year-old, a member of Richmond and Zetland Harriers, proved his credentials for the big occasion when he won a shock gold medal at the National Collegiate All-American Championships 10,000m in June.
“I’m delighted the hard work has paid off after all these years,” said Scott.
“I have a good sprint finish and I know people are aware of that now. That’s how I won a lot of races in America. These Championship races aren’t very quick, and I tend to have a lot left at the end.
“If the race goes that way, all the Championship races have stood me in good stead for these type of races. Hopefully I can draw from my experiences in the last five years and put them into practice. I feel I’m in good shape for whatever is thrown at me.”
Farah will be aiming to rubberstamp his status as the world’s greatest endurance athlete and do the long-distance double for the fifth straight major championships.
The 34-year-old won gold in the 10,000m on the opening night of the championships, and glory over half the distance would be his 11th straight win in world or Olympic finals.
Farah said: “Experience is everything. If you’ve been in a situation before and done it then it’s easier to deal with and that will help me massively. It’s all the new ones that are a bit more scary because they are raw.”
South African world record holder Wayde van Niekierkhe defended his 400m title last night despite tying up in the final 50m. The Olympic gold medallist won in 43.98sec ahead of Steve Gardiner of Bahamas, with Qatar’s Abdalelah Haroun finishing quickest for bronze.
Meanwhile, Britain’s Kyle Langford announced himself as a future star after producing a storming finish to place fourth in the 800m, won by Frenchman Pierre-Ambroise Bosse.