Mile News

Bernard Lagat: Farewell to the Track

September 07, 2016

“If I had one opportunity to go back, I would have run with Hicham El Guerrouj in the Mile when he was breaking the world record [3:43.13] or when he was running 3:45, 3:44s. I would have loved to have been there."


Running legend Bernard Lagat wrapped up his track career in style with a runner-up finish at the 2016 ISTAF Berlin. He talks career highlights, regrets and future plans.

“I have no regrets,” Bernard Lagat tells SPIKES on the eve of the final track race of his career. The 41-year-old is reflecting on two decades of international running during which he has won a whopping 13 global medals.

Maybe his most impressive feat is he still looks the same as when he started out – some might say even better. “In my university pictures I look way older than I look now, it’s awesome!” he grins.

For the evergreen Lagat, who during the European season lives and trains in Tübingen, Germany, the decision to perform his swansong in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium was a no-brainer. It was on the same iconic blue track that he snared a pair of medals at the 2009 World Championships. First he won 1500m bronze with a great late burst, before dusting himself off for the 5000m where he would celebrate the “second favorite” moment of his career. The final produced one of the most gripping 5000m finishes in history, and Lagat missed gold by just 0.24secs behind another legend Kenenisa Bekele.

He had found himself in similar situation at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Lagat, then representing his native Kenya, challenged Mile titan Hicham El Guerrouj in a dramatic 1500m finish. The pair drained the best from each other as the lead changed several times. Lagat had to settle for second, a mere 0.12 secs behind the world record holder.

But there is no bitterness or disappointment as he recalls those narrow defeats. No regrets, except one.

Continue reading at:

Tags: world championships (20) , olympics (67) , bernard lagat (35)

Facebook Comments

Return the Mile to prominence on the American & worldwide sports and cultural landscape by elevating and celebrating the Mile to create a movement.

Bring Back the Mile as the premier event in the sport, and increase interest in and media coverage of the Mile for both those who love the distance as well as the general public.

Bring Back the Mile to celebrate the storied distance and to recognize the people who made and make the Mile great and to promote Mile events and the next generation of U.S. Milers.

Bring Back the Mile to create a national movement for the Mile as America’s Distance,
to inspire Americans to run the Mile as part of their fitness program and to replace the 1600 meters at High School State Track & Field Meets across the country.

Become a Mile Maniac member or a BBTM sponsor today! Join us, and go Mile!

Join Us

Thanks for joining the movement and being a Mile Maniac. We'll keep you up to-date with our Mile wires as well as exclusive contests and opportunities. Help us spread the word by sharing our site and joining us on Facebook, Twitter & Instagram!