Borders Olympic athlete Chris O’Hare confirms retirement from track at age of 31

Borders running star Chris O’Hare has confirmed his retirement from athletics at the age of 31, just short of two years after his last competitive outing.

By Darin Hutson
Monday, 17th January 2022, 9:45 am
Updated Wednesday, 19th January 2022, 9:46 am
Chris O'Hare celebrating after winning the men's 3,000m final at the 2019 British Athletics Indoor Championships in Birmingham (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
Chris O'Hare celebrating after winning the men's 3,000m final at the 2019 British Athletics Indoor Championships in Birmingham (Photo by Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)

That decision, announced by the Scottish mile record-holder on his Instagram account, follows a hip operation in late 2020.

West Linton’s O’Hare has two 12th-placed finishes in world championship finals to his name, as well as 1,500m bronze medals from the 2014 European Athletics Championships in Switzerland and the indoor version in the Czech Republic the year after.

He’s also notched up 25 sub-four-minute miles, eight more than any other Scot.

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His Scottish indoor mile record of three minutes and 52.91 seconds was set in New York in 2016.

The former Peebles High School pupil, living in the US these days and working as an estate agent after doing a degree in sports science at Tulsa University, took part in the 2016 Brazil Olympics but missed out on a place in the 1,500m final there after finishing 11th in his semi-final.He returned to Scotland from his current home in Oklahoma to pick up a 3,000m silver medal at the 2019 European indoor championships in Glasgow, but another indoor event back in the US, in Boston, in February 2020 turned out to be his last competitive appearance after surgery later that year effectively ended his running career.

“Retiring is never an easy decision for an athlete to make, but I am relieved to say that, although I will miss everything about training and racing, I am happy to be a retired athlete,” said the father of three, married to Meredith Burns since 2015.“Running has blessed me with so many opportunities and so many wonderful lifelong friendships.

“I wouldn’t have been able to achieve what I did without the unwavering support of so many people committed to making my dreams a reality.

“Thank you to my amazing parents and siblings, who sacrificed so much since I was 12 to give me every opportunity to succeed. “Thank you to my perfect wife, who has always supported my dream and who never failed to step up and parent alone when I was away racing or on training camps for months at a time. “Thank you to my coaches throughout the years – Terrence Mahon, Steve Gulley, Dave Campbell and Charlie Russell – for always steering me in the right direction and giving your all to my development as an athlete and as a man.  “Thank you to my children – Ronan, Riley and Quinn – for being the best source of motivation an athlete could ever ask for, and for cuddles on the couch when I needed them most.“Finally, thank you to all those who have supported me from afar, with kind messages when I won and, more importantly, messages of support when I didn’t.”