Stuart Weir sent this piece on Laura Muir’s decision to not double in Tokyo.
The level of competition at the Olympics can not be underestimated. Laura Muir is in the toughest women’s middle distance event. The 800m and 1,500m double means six races in eight days.
We applaud Laura Muir for her decision and look forward to watching the events in Tokyo!
Just 1,500m for Laura Muir
Laura Muir has decided against doubling up at the Tokyo Olympics and will concentrate on running the 1500m. Commenting at the Gateshead Diamond League in June, she said: “Nothing is set in stone. I still have a few more races before the GB trials and will make the decision closer to the time. I am unlikely to do the 5000 but the 800 is certainly a possibility”. She is no stranger to doubling up: in the 2017 Worth Championship she was 4th in 1500 and sixth in the 5000; in the 2017 and 2019 European Indoors, she won the 1500m and 3000m. This season she has run five 800s and three 1500s. At the GB trials, she opted to run the 800m only, relying on the discretionary place in 1500.
There have been no explanation from Muir so we can only speculate. The facts are that Laura’s PR at 800 is 1:58.42, a time bettered by 14 athletes in the world this year. This would tend to confirm the view that her better medal chance is the 1500m
Muir’s decision to relinquish her place in the 800, opens a door for Alexandra Bell who was fifth in the GB trials in 2021. In May this year, Bell ran a 1:58.52, which made her the leading contender, ahead of Ellie Baker (fourth in the GB trials) whose PR is 1:59.54, and Adelle Tracey (sixth in the 2021 trials) and with a PR of 1:59.50.