The 1000m was an exciting event, with top middle distance athletes challenging themselves. This is how Stuart Weir saw the womens’ 1000m at the 2020 Monaco Diamond League meet.
The women’s 1000m was an intriguing race for several reasons. It had a stellar field including a World and Olympic champion. But as a non-championship distance, no one had any “previous”. In the end everyone in the race ran a season’s best or better, in what was undoubtedly their first race of 2020 at the distance. Also, in this intriguing year, there was the question of whose training had been disrupted most.
Pacemaker Shelayna Oskan-Clarke took the field through 400m in 59.31. At 800m the leader was the 2016 Olympic and 2017 world champion at 1500m, Faith Kipyegon and the time 1:59.66. Kipyegon was not caught, winning in 2:29.15. Laura Muir, beaten in Finland a few days ago, got a revenge in the battle of the Scots, coming second in 2:30.82 with Jemma Reekie fourth in 2:31.11 and Ciara Mageean third. World 800m champion Halimah Nakaayi was fifth.
Faith Kipyegon said of her race: “I feel great to be back racing and after all we’ve been through, it was a great race today! Having Laura so close to me coming at the front helped me to push myself. ButTraining in isolation was really hard, training alone with the tracks in Kenya all closed was complicated but I managed to train a little bit and I’m really happy to win tonight”.
Laura Muir commented: “It was really good to get out there and I was a really good atmosphere as well. I am really happy to be racing again and to get the British record as well. You want to race the race and I would love to have gone out there and won but coming second to the Olympic champion was pretty good. I’ve gone for that British record once before and missed it so to get it here was great.
Laura Muir, 2020 Monaco DL, 1000m, photo by Etienne Fiacre
“Jemma Reekie and me working together it meant that we were working really hard out of lockdown and pushing one another really hard, so even though we didn’t have many competitions, we were still motivated to push each other on and run well and you’ve seen that in these last couple of races we’ve been running really well. Racing a time like today gives me a lot of confidence going into an Olympic year”.