HE might already be the most decorated British distance runner in history, but Sir Mo Farah is determined to continue rewriting the record books – starting with tomorrow’s Simplyhealth Great North Run.

Farah will attempt to record a sixth successive victory when he lines up on the Great North Run start line in the shadow of Newcastle’s Tyne Bridge, having triumphed in the last five stagings of the world’s most prestigious half-marathon.

After that, the 36-year-old will head to Chicago, where he will attempt to retain the city marathon title he claimed last year, before he begins to turn his attention to next year’s Olympic marathon in Tokyo.

Having swept all before him on the track, winning back-to-back Olympic titles over 5,000m and 10,000m, Farah freely admits he was lacking motivation when he opted to end his track career in 2017.

The switch to marathon running has reinvigorated him, and while he accepts he is still coming to terms with such a brutal examination of a distance runner’s skills, he remains as hungry as ever to triumph on the World stage.

“If I hadn’t switched away from the track, I wouldn’t still be running,” admitted Farah, who claimed his first major title back in 2010 when he triumphed in the European Championships. “I wasn’t motivated anymore, and you have to be hungry to do what I do. The marathon has changed that, and I feel like I used to, I want to win things.

“Winning medals for my country was always the number one for me – that’s what I like to happen - and no one can take away the things that I’ve done. But I want to win medals still. It is still incredibly important to me.

“There’s two ways you can run a marathon – you can go for a time, and run the absolute hardest you can just thinking about the clock, or you can go in and think, ‘I can run maybe 2:04 or 2:05 and win major marathon titles and medals’.

“For me, winning medals is still important. Without wanting to put pressure on myself, in 2020 (at the Olympics), if I’m capable of winning a medal for my country, that would be brilliant. That’s why I would put myself out there. I want to continue with a similar career to what I had, winning medals. It’s still important to me.”

Another gold medal tomorrow should be achievable, with Farah starting as a strong favourite on Tyneside despite competition from World Championship marathon silver medallist Tamarit Tola and Australia’s Commonwealth half-marathon champion Jack Rayner.

Farah will have half-an-eye on the clock – his best Great North Run time of 59:22, set in 2015, is half-a-minute away from Martin Mathathi’s course record – but his main priority is to retain his title and establish a strong foundation ahead of Chicago.

“It would be amazing to have that record of six in a row, and I always enjoy this race,” he said. “It is a good test, and it fits in well with the build-up to Chicago. There’s an extra week between the two this year, which is a help, so it fits in nicely.”

Given his extensive experience over 10,000m on the track, the 13.1-mile half-marathon distance does not hold out too many fears for an athlete of Farah’s experience.

The marathon is a different beast entirely though, and for all that he has achieved since competing in his first World Youth Championships some 20 years ago, Farah admits to still feeling a sense of trepidation when he lines up on a marathon start line.

“I’ve not conquered anything in the marathon yet,” he said. “I was consistent on the track, and knew what I could do. But the marathon is different. On the track, if you started hitting the wall, you maybe had four laps to go and could get yourself through. In the marathon, you still have miles and miles to run. That’s a challenge.”