Tag Archives: Laura Muir

Laura Muir to attack world 1000m record in Birmingham

The Tokyo Olympic 1500m silver medallist Laura Muir will target the 1000m world indoor record at the Müller Indoor Grand Prix Birmingham – a World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting which will be held on Saturday (19) at the Utilita Arena in Birmingham.

Muir, the 2018 world indoor 1500m silver medallist, is the European indoor 1000m record holder having clocked 2:31.93 in Birmingham in 2017. The current world record is held by Maria Mutola from Mozambique , the Olympic 800m champion in Sydney 2000, who ran 2:30.94 in Stockholm in 1999.

The 28 years-old is a multiple European indoor champion, is determined to get her year off to a strong start at the Birmingham meeting, which takes place in exactly one month’s time and which forms part of the World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold series.

“I’m currently out in South Africa continuing my preparations for the 2022 season, so it will be exciting to get a chance to race indoors and I’m looking forward to testing myself over 1000m at the Müller Indoor Grand Prix in Birmingham,” said the 28-year-old, who also holds the European indoor record over 3000m.

“I had an incredible year in 2021 and it was fun to finish it off by racing in Scotland over cross country, but it’s time to get back to running fast times on the track. Birmingham holds many fond memories for me winning two medals at the World Indoor Championships and breaking a number of national records.

“I ran the British and European record of 2:31.93 on this track in 2017 which made me the second fastest of all time over the distance, so I would love to try and go one better and break the world indoor record.

“It won’t be an easy record to break – it has stood since 1999 – but the track is fast and the crowds in Birmingham are great, so hopefully I can run it close.”

Throughout the series, each athlete’s best three results will count towards their overall points score. The athlete with the most points in each scoring discipline at the end of the tour will be declared the winner and will be awarded a USD$10,000 bonus along with a wild card entry for the World Athletics Indoor Championships Belgrade in March.

The Müller Indoor Grand Prix is the fifth meeting of the 2022 World Athletics Indoor Tour (Gold). There are seven ‘Gold’ level meetings across the series, starting with Karlsruhe on January 28 and culminating in Madrid on March 2.

‘I was just so happy to survive’ – Sifan Hassan reflects on epic Olympic treble bid

As Sifan Hassan flopped to the Tokyo track, it was difficult to guess her emotions. Joy at becoming only the second woman to complete an Olympic distance double?

Regret that the 1500m title that would have made it an unprecedented treble had slipped away the previous evening?

Relief that a campaign that covered more than 15 miles in eight days was finally over?

A mix of all three?

In fact it was none of them but rather something more primal.

“Honestly, at that moment, I was just so happy to survive,” she tells Sport Today on BBC World Service.

“I was really in pain, I was suffering so much, I was sweating very, very, very hard, all my face was burning, my hand was burning, all my body was burning. I felt I had no water inside me.

“I thought I was going to pass out. In that moment I didn’t mind about gold, I just wanted to be alive and healthy.”

The Dutchwoman’s Olympic ambitions had taken her to the very edge of her endurance.

Not since the days of sepia news reels had an athlete taken on such a monster schedule, competing in the 1500m, 5,000m and 10,000m, with the longest distance coming last on a suffocatingly humid night in the Japanese capital.

Hassan flat out, framed by worried medical staff, clutching ice to her grimacing face was the final scene.

But the 29-year-old’s epic assault on the Olympics had already featured the see-sawing emotional swings of a summer blockbuster.

On the morning of 2 August, she tripped at the start of the final lap of her 1500m heat. Her rivals cantered on as she scrabbled on the floor. For an instant it seemed her bid for three golds was over before it had really begun.

Hassan sprung to her feet, hared after the pack, made up 25 metres on them, and came through to win.

That evening, she returned to the Olympic Stadium and motored away from world champion Hellen Obiri to clinch 5,000m gold.

Despair to delight. But her second and final gold, that draining 10,000m triumph, was fuelled by anger.

Hassan had been unable to stick with the pace in the previous night’s 1500m final. Britain’s Laura Muir and Kenyan winner Faith Kipyegon turned up the heat to leave Hassan third.

On the bottom step of the podium, she stewed.

“When I lost, at the time, I was so mad,” she says.

“At the medal ceremony, when I went back to my room I knew there was something inside me.

“That was when I decided: I will die tomorrow, I will go to the end.”

Hassan’s third-place finish in the 1500m final behind Kenya’s Faith Kipyegon (centre) and Great Britain’s
Laura Muir (left) fueled her win in the next day’s 10,000m final

The frustration and disappointment came out with everything else as she emptied the tanks in her final Tokyo race.

While Hassan’s rivals picked and chose their events, zeroing in to maximise their chances of gold, she says curiosity was behind her decision to go for a full house of distance events.

Was it possible, she asked herself? Logistically, athletically, mentally, could she contend across three events at the highest level in a painfully short span of time?

She could. And now she, and others, might do it again.

“God willing,” she says, when asked about the prospect of fighting on three fronts at another major championship.

“But I don’t think it will be as hard as in Tokyo, because I have done it.

“Even if another athlete had done it, it is going to be much easier because we know it is possible.

“Something is always more difficult when we don’t know before.”

Her curiosity has been piqued by something else, though.

Hassan has plans to combine road and track, banking that her extraordinary talent can bridge the divide between the two.

She hopes to step up to marathons, while still taking on the best in stadiums. It’s another huge challenge.

Britain’s Mo Farah, himself an Olympic double distance champion, can attest to how confidence forged on the track can crumble on the tarmac, even when focusing solely on the marathon.

Hassan, though, has already shown in Tokyo that she’ll go to the brink to chase history and pursue greatness.

Laura Muir: I’ve got a few years left in these legs – Olympic silver was not the end

Laura Muir knows she may never better the Olympic silver medal that gave Britain a night to remember in Tokyo.

But as the New Year dawns she insists her first taste of global success has only made her more hungry.

Until now Muir awoke from every Hogmanay resolving to shed her ‘nearly’ tag. Not today, not after that 1,500 metres performance.

It remains to be seen whether she will ever top beating Sifan Hassan to second place behind Faith Kipyegon in a British record time.

But the 28-year-old Scot has made clear she will not fail for the want of trying.

“The fire inside me is, if anything, burning even more fiercely now,” she said. “Tokyo gave me a taste of what it’s like to be on a global podium.

“I want more of that; I want to add more medals. It’s going to be incredibly tough. This is probably the most competitive time there’s been in my event. But I’m very excited to be a part of that.”

Rather than rest on her laurels, Muir has targeted all three championships this summer: Worlds, Commonwealths and Europeans.

She has already returned to racing, winning the Scottish Short Course Cross-Country Championships.

It was small beer compared to the Olympics but it sent a message that she is back up and running, business as usual.

“I think I’ve got a few years left in these legs,” she smiled. “I’ll keep on running competitively for as long as my body holds up.

“To have finally put a performance out there that shows the calibre of athlete I am is huge for me. I always knew I could do it, but going to Tokyo and delivering has given me huge belief.

“I will now go into championships more relaxed, with the confidence that I’ve been and done it already. That’s a huge hurdle. Now I’m over it, things should be a bit smoother in that sense.

“It’s going to be hard, of course it is. But I’m incorporating more strength and conditioning work to make me stronger.

“It’s a matter of being consistent and staying injury free. If I work as hard as I can hopefully it will get me closer and closer to that golden position.”

UK Athletics names only 17 athletes on top-level funding for next Olympics

UK ATHLETICS has announced its list of athletes who will receive potentially career-defining funding as the summer Olympics scheduled for Paris in 2024 heave into view.

Among them is Keely Hodgkinson, who has been offered top level funding on the British Athletics Olympic world class programme.

The 19-year-old won 800m silver at the Tokyo Olympics in the summer, smashing Kelly Holmes’s British record, which had stood since 1995, by almost a second.

In March she became the youngest British winner at the European Athletics Indoor Championships for more than half a century and the youngest ever 800m European indoor champion, despite not being on full funding.

Performance director Sara Symington said: “As we start the Paris cycle, and longer-term Los Angeles 2028, we made a number of informed decisions in regard to the world-class programme membership that aligns with our strategic priorities.

“We will work closely with the 67 athlete-and-coach pairings that we are offering membership to, and will look to add support and value in their journey via their individual athlete plan,” she droned.

“The selection process is robust and lengthy and we use a lot of data which is complemented by the knowledge of our event leads to inform the decision-making process.

“We have given careful consideration to those athletes who meet the selection criteria and performance matrix which align to the future ambitions of the world class programme.”

Josh Kerr moves up to podium-level funding after winning 1500m bronze in Japan, as do Andrew Pozzi, Jemma Reekie and Jazmin Sawyers.

Alex Bell, who came seventh in the 800m final, has been offered podium funding just two years after saying she was considering taking legal action against UK Athletics after being overlooked for funding for Tokyo.

They join Dina Asher-Smith, Laura Muir, Katarina Johnson-Thompson and Adam Gemili, with just 17 athletes on top-level funding. Reece Prescod and Zharnel Hughes have been downgraded to relay funding only, despite Hughes reaching the 100m Olympic final.

Olympic finalists Lizzie Bird, Jake Heyward and Marc Scott are among the athletes to be offered membership at podium potential level. Andrew Butchart, CJ Ujah and Tom Bosworth have seen their funding cut.

Source: morningstaronline.co.uk

Timothy Cheruiyot to give a talk at BMC endurance day

Olympic 1500m silver medallist Timothy Cheruiyot has been invited to talk at the British Milers’ Club event that will be held at Leeds Beckett University on Sunday November 14, 2021.

Cheruiyot who is the World 1500m champion will tag along his Rongai Athletics Club (RAC) coach Bernard Ouma and they will give the talk on European Endurance Conference.

The 25 year-old will talk about the secrets of his success at a British Milers’ Club (BMC) coaching day.

Neville Taylor, one of the BMC coaches organising the day, says: “We have put together a great programme with UK and overseas presenters. “We see it has a benefit to both coaches and athletes and it forms part of the BMC’s coach education strategy. “Apart from a full day of presentations there are two practical training sessions with international coaches and major championship medallists.”

The day, which is supported by England Athletics at the university’s Headingley Campus, begins with an introduction from Tim Brennan and a talk from Norman Poole on “aspects of the 800m”. James Thie will then give a lecture entitled “The Coach!” before an 11am practical session led by David Lowes, Andy Henderson and Mark Vile.

After lunch Cheruiyot and Ouma will speak with Geoff Wightman in front of the audience.

Thie will then interview Andy Young, the coach of Laura Muir and Jemma Reekie, before another practical session involving Becky Lyne and Marilyn Okoro as they explain their “Gracefull Running” philosophy.

Laura Muir named Scottish Athlete of Year

Tokyo 1500m silver medallist, Laura Muir was  named Scottish Athlete of the Year for 2021 at the 4J Annual Awards that were held on Saturday (9) night in Glasgow.

“We’re more than two months on from Tokyo but it still feels very odd,” said Muir, whose coach Andy Young won Performance Coach of the Year. “When you work so hard for something for so long and then you finally achieve it there is a sense at times that it is not real. I look at the medal sometimes and it is very strange.

Muir was competing against the short-list of fellow Olympic medallist Josh Kerr as well as training partner Jemma Reekie and Eilish McColgan.

Men’s and women’s European Athlete of the Year finalists announced

With 10 days until the Golden Tracks award ceremony takes place in Lausanne, Switzerland on 16 October, we can announce the three finalists for the men’s and women’s European Athlete of the Year.

The shortlist includes both the 2019 European Athletes of the Year Mariya Lasitskene and Karsten Warholm, both of whom won gold medals at the Tokyo Olympic Games and trophies in the Diamond League final in Zurich.

The shortlist was determined by a four-part voting process which incorporates votes from fans across social media, Member Federations, media and an expert European Athletics panel. Each section constituted 25 percent of the vote.

Sifan Hassan (The Netherlands)

Sifan Hassan almost pulled off the unthinkable feat of winning three individual gold medals at the same Olympics. Hassan won the 5000m and 10,000m titles but the Dutchwoman came up narrowly short in the 1500m, settling for bronze behind Faith Kipyegon and Laura Muir.

Hassan’s pre-Olympic campaign was highlighted by a world 10,000m record of 29:06.82 in Hengelo – a mark which was beaten on the same track only two days later by Letesenbet Gidey – and while her exploits in Tokyo had understandably caught up her, the seemingly indefitagle Hassan still finished her season with a flourish.

After winning over 5000m in Eugene, Hassan ran one of the fastest mile times in history in Brussels with 4:14.74 before finishing a close second to Kipyegon over 1500m in the Diamond League final in Zurich.

Mariya Lasitskene (Authorised Neutral Athlete / Russia)

Mariya Lasitskene has won multiple world and European titles both indoors and outdoors but an Olympic medal was conspicuously absent from her collection.

Still a junior at the time of the 2012 Olympics, Lasitskene missed out on selection for London and the blanket ban on Russian athletes meant Lasitskene was absent from the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.

Troubled by a knee injury all season, Lasitskene only qualified for the final by virtue of a third-time clearance at 1.95m but the Russian showed her immense competitive mettle by clearing season’s best of 2.02m and then 2.04m to seal the title.

Lasitskene, who was the 2019 European Athlete of the Year, then went on to clear 2.05m in the Diamond League final in Zurich. Will she become just the second athlete after Dafne Schippers (2014-15) to win the award in back-to-back editions?

Anita Wlodarczyk (Poland)

Like Lasitskene, Anita Wlodarczyk was on the comeback trail from injury but the seasoned campaigner had timed her peak to perfection.

The world record-holder created history at the Olympic Games in Tokyo by becoming the first female athlete to win three successive gold medals in the same event, clinching a third gold medal in the hammer with a winning mark of 78.48m – her best mark in three years.

Armand Duplantis (Sweden)

His world record of 6.18m remains just beyond his reach for now but Armand Duplantis achieved a record for consistency at the highest level, clearing six metres or higher in no fewer than 12 competitions indoors and outdoors.

His indoor season was highlighted by a 6.10m clearance in Belgrade, a precursor to another title at the European Indoor Championships in Torun where he cleared 6.05m to take ownership of the championship record in the arena in which he broke the world record for the first time in 2020.

Duplantis suffered two unexpected losses outdoors but the American-based Swede won every significant competition including gold at the Olympic Games with 6.02m and the Diamond League final in Zurich with 6.06m.

Duplantis has previously been a winner at the Golden Tracks. He was named joint men’s Rising Star in 2018 alongside Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen following their incredible exploits at the European Athletics Championships in Berlin.

Lamont Marcell Jacobs (Italy)

The men’s sprinting scene was thrust wide open this season and the vastly improving Lamont Marcell Jacobs duly filled this void with two scintillating performances in the 100m at the Tokyo Olympics.

Having broken the 10 second-barrier ahead of Tokyo, Jacobs eclipsed the European record with a 9.83 clocking in the semifinal before storming to gold in the final in 9.80. Further success came at the end of the championships as Jacobs ran the second leg of Italy’s gold medal-winning team in the 4x100m.

Jacobs gave notice of what was to come this summer by dominating the 60m at the European Athletics Indoor Championships in Torun where he won gold in a world lead of 6.47. He also caught the attention of eagle-eyed track fans with a scintillating 8.91 split at the World Relays in Silesia.

Karsten Warholm (Norway)

Karsten Warholm raced lightly in 2021 but his performances were of a stratospheric standard.

Warholm clinched the world record from Kevin Young, appropriately on home soil at the Bislett Games in Oslo with 46.70 but the Norwegian tore his record asunder at the Olympic Games in Tokyo where he broke through the 46 second-barrier with 45.94 – a respectable time even for the 400m flat!

For the third successive season, Warholm enjoyed an unbeaten campaign in the 400m hurdles. He also took notable wins in Monaco and Berlin as well as in Zurich at the Diamond League final.

At 25, Warholm is one of the few athletes to have won both the Rising Star award and the men’s European Athlete of the Year award. Will he win again in Lausanne?

Source: european-athletics.com

Laura Muir to run for Scotland at 2022 Commonwealth Games

Scottish Olympic medallists Laura Muir and Josh Kerr have had their Commonwealth Games places confirmed. Eilish McColgan, Jemma Reekie, Jake Wightman and Andy Butchart will also be in the Birmingham 2022 team after their summer achievements in Tokyo.

The event runs from 28 July to 8 August next year. In a hectic 2022 schedule, the World Championships are in Oregon from 15-24 July, while Munich stages the European Championships from 11-21 August. Muir smashed the British record to finish behind defending champion Faith Kipyegon in the 1500m in Japan.

Kerr finished third over the same distance in a personal best time, while Wightman also made the final. Reekie ran her fastest race to date in Tokyo but had to settle for a fourth place over 800m after she was caught on the line.

McColgan failed to qualify for the 5,000m final after being clipped by opponents but went on to reach the 10,000m final, coming in ninth. Butchart was the only British athlete to make the men’s 5,000m final, finishing 11th.

Can Wightman make it a Commonwealth collection?

 Wightman has a 1500m bronze from the 2018 Commonwealth Games after coming fourth in the 800m on the Gold Coast. Butchart missed out with a broken foot, while Muir did not compete because she was concentrating on her veterinary medicine exams. McColgan finished sixth in the 1500m and 5,000m in Australia, having also come in sixth when competing in the steeplechase at Glasgow 2014.

Last month, she beat her personal best over 10,000m in winning the Great Manchester Run in 30 minutes 52 seconds. And, after winning silver and bronze medals for Great Britain, the 30-year-old believes it’s “the perfect time” to win one for Scotland. “I certainly feel more motivated than ever to win a medal for Scotland,” she told BBC Scotland. “It’s not going to be easy but after the year I’ve had, I feel I’m in the best shape of my life.”

Kerr and Reekie will be making their Commonwealth Games debuts in Birmingham. “I have no doubt the atmosphere will be electric and I’m looking forward to bringing a medal home to Scotland,” said Kerr.

Laura Muir has raked in almost £1million from track success

Laura Muir has raked in almost £1million from her track success.

The 28-year-old won silver in the women’s 1500m at the Tokyo Olympics last month and set a new British record.

The qualified vet, from Milnathort, Kinross-shire, will soon see her income soar higher, with ­sponsors keen to sign her up.

But latest accounts for her company, Laura Muir Running Limited, show she has already made a fortune from her eight-year professional career.

The firm declared total assets of £878,313 for 2020 – up almost £100,000 from the previous year.

The company owed creditors £93,519, leaving Laura with shareholder funds of £784,794. In 2019, shareholder funds were £588,536.

Laura is the sole director and owns all of the shares.

The accounts also show she received almost £60,000 in dividends last year.

The athlete has swapped her running shoes for a period costume to star in a new Muller yoghurt advert.

SOurce: dailyrecord.co.uk

Sifan Hassan nominated for European Female Athlete of the Year

Triple Tokyo Games medallist, Sifan Hassan from the Netherlands has been nominated for European Women’s Athlete of the Year from the continent’s sporting body after her sensational silver performance at this year’s Tokyo Olympics.

The double Olympic champion in 5000m and 10,000m earlier this year is on European Athletics’ shortlist for the prestigious award, currently held by Russian high jumper Mariya Lasitskene who is also nominated in the Golden Tracks awards.

No prize was handed out in 2020 but Sifan’s exploits on the track over the past two years, particularly her exhilarating Olympic run which she got two gold medals and a bronze medal in 1500m, earned her nomination.

Also on the list is Great Britain’s 1500m silver medallist Laura Muir, triple jumper Patricia Mamona, and Femke Bol, Polish javelin and hammer throwers Maria Andrejcyk and Anita Wlodarczyk, Diamond League pole vault champion Anzhelika Sidorova and Olympic champions Malaika Mihambo of Germany and Italy’s Olympic race walker Antonella Palmisano. Olympic heptathlon champion Nafissatou Thiam completes the list.

Supporters can back their favourite on social media by re-tweeting or liking their image before October 3. The online vote accounts for 25 percent of the consideration and the winners will be announced at the Golden Tracks ceremony in Lausanne on October 16.