Mo Farah’s season off to flying start

Double Olympic champion Mo Farah opened his 2013 outdoor season with a win over 5,000m at the Oxy Track and Field Meeting in Eagle Rock, Los Angeles.

It was 12 months ago at the same meeting that Farah recorded the fastest 1,500m/5,000m double in history en route to his 5,000m/10,000m triumph at the London Olympics.

On this occasion, Farah was content to sit in the pack of 20 athletes, leaving it until the final lap to produce his trademark fast finish clocking, for him, a pedestrian 13m 15.68s.

USA’s Dathan Ritzenhein followed in 13:17.38 with Australian record holder Ben St Lawrence in third 13:18.81.

Scottish international Dave Bishop (Bristol & Westbury) finished 4th in the 1,500m, clocking a Glasgow 2014 qualifying time of 3m 38.48s.

The performance of the meeting, however, came from 17-year-old high school junior Mary Cain, who placed second in the women’s 1,500m in 4m 04.62s, shattering the US junior record of 4:09.10 that had been held since 1987 by Suzy Favor Hamilton.

Olympic long jump champion Greg Rutherford never really got to grips with the wet conditions at the Shanghai Diamond League Meeting, finishing third.

The Milton Keynes athlete fouled his opening effort before recording 8.08m in the third round. His only other effort over 8m was a final round 8.05.

The capacity crowd celebrated a home victory for Li Jinzhe at a 2013 world lead of 8.34m, with Aleksandr Menkov (Russia) in second 8.31m. GB’s Chris Tomlinson finished 9th (7.66m) and JJ Jegede 11th 7.58m.

The top track performance of the meeting came from Olympic 400m champion Kirani James (Grenada), who won in 44.02 seconds.

Leaving his home run effort much later was Beijing Olympic 1,500m champion Asbel Kiprop (Kenya), who moved up from 12th place rounding the final bend and in a lunge for the line secured, an at one point seemingly impossible victory, in 3m 32.39s ,out-dipping Mekonnen Gebremedhin (Ethiopia) by four hundredths of a second.

Elsewhere in the field London bronze medallist Robbie Grabarz placed fifth in the high jump at 2.24m. In the women’s events Yelena Isinbayeva (Russia) returned to top form with a 4.70m clearance ahead of USA’s Mary Saxer 4.60m.