Just last night, I had posted a piece on the fact that Laura Muir would not compete at the 800m distance in Tokyo 2021, to focus on the 1,500m. Today, Laura sets a new Scottish record with her win in 1:56.73! Jemma Reekie was second in 1:56.93 PB and American Kate Grace was third in 1:57.20 PB! Stuart Weir had to write on this one!
Laura Muir wins 800
Laura Muir won the 800m in 1:56.73. But before we get into tonight’s race, let me give you some context. In the GB championships 2 weeks before Monaco, Laura Muir finished third in the 800m. It was a slow race (62 second opening lap). Muir took the lead on the back straight and held it until near the finish when, first her training partner, and then 19 year-old Keely Hodgkinson overtook her. Her comment on the race was: “It wasn’t a great race tactically for me but it is what it is. It wasn’t smart and you can’t afford that with the calibre of these girls”. It ended well as she was selected in the 800m (and 1500m) for the Olympics. Then this week she decided not to double-up after all.
So Muir went to Monaco with a PR of 1:58.42 to take on the world. The pacemaker went through in 54.80 – much faster than she was supposed to. When the pacemaker stopped Natoya Goule took over the lead and pushed for home. This time Muir got the tactics right and timed her to finish to perfection. 1:56.73 gave Muir a Scottish record and made her the second-fastest British woman at the distance after Kelly Holmes.
The race finished
ALMANZA Rose Mary
Muir was delighted with the race, commenting: “Running 1:56 is giving me huge confidence for Tokyo. I couldn’t have asked for a better performance today ahead of 1500 in Tokyo. Having a training partner like Jemma is huge, Jemma has made me a much faster 800m runner. We push each other so much and we’ve both run 1:56, so I have definitely become faster because of her. I am going to go home tomorrow, have a week at home before flying out to Tokyo, and just train as hard as I can, so I am in even better shape in Tokyo. I want to win a medal, that is all I am focusing on”.
Asked if the win left her regretting her decision not to run 800 in Tokyo, she replied: “No, concentrating on the 1500 gives me the best chance of a medal. It is my stronger event and I think I am in a better position concentrating on the 1500”.
Laura also showed how to deal with stupid questions. When asked how she wanted to improve her racing. She said she wanted to get faster!
Jemma tweeted: “I said to Laura this week ‘we are gonna run fast’; we sure did.
With six athletes running under 1:58, the prospects for Tokyo look mouth-watering.