Stuart Weir will be covering the 2023 European Indoors from Istanbul, Turkey for RunBlogRun from 2 March-5 March 2023. This is his third preview, and we look forward to seeing Laura Muir compete in Istanbul! 

Laura Muir likes the European Indoors.  

Laura Muir likes the European Indoors.  In 2017,  she won the 1500 and 3000 in Belgrade and retained her titles in 2019 in Glasgow for a unique double-double. There were reasons for doing it each time as she explained recently: “In 2017 we felt we needed to make a statement after Rio that I can perform well at championships.

Laura Muir, 2023 Birmingham WIT Final, photo by Martin Bateman

In 2019 in Glasgow I was originally only due to run 1500 because it overlapped with the 3K. But then I was running so well and even though the 1500 heat was only a couple of hours before the 3K, we still thought actually we could do pretty well.  I also felt like if there were any championships to do the double, it would be when I’m defending champion in two events when it’s in my home city and when I’m an ambassador for the event!”

Laura gave another reason for including indoor races in her schedule: “I just love racing and it would be a really long time from September to May, just training and training without any interruption or any sort of gauge of how you are doing”.

Speaking specifically about the Millrose, she said that winning it had been an ambition for some time. “It was just about going there and doing the American circuit for the first time, the first year I really had the opportunity to do it. Millrose especially is a very, very prestigious event. And I wanted that trophy. So, it was just a matter of going there and hopefully coming out with two wins, which I did, and to see where I was at over the two distances, and to get back in that competitive environment”.

Laura Muir takes the Mile! The Millrose Games
at The Armory Track
New York, NY
2023-02-11, photo by Kevin Morris

In Birmingham last week she was billed as attempting the world record in the 1000 meters.  In the 2017 event,  Muir had recorded the second fastest time in history over the 1000m distance, 2:31.93, with only Maria Mutola (MOZ) going faster. Muir said: “I’ve had a few shots at the 1000m now, a couple indoors and one outdoors, and I am getting a bit better feel for it. It is a hard one to pace.

“In 2017 I was just targeting Kelly’s [Holmes] British record, so that’s what I went in for and broke that and got the European record at the same time, which is second all-time. I was delighted. It was an amazing atmosphere. I have raced the 1000m a couple of times since then. I did it once outdoors in Monaco, and I ran faster than the world record indoors, so it is good to know that I have physically run faster, just unfortunately in the wrong place. This is the first time running the 1000m having run the time before, every other time I have not run quick enough, but I know physically I can do it.”

Laura Muir wins the 3,000 meters, New Balance Indoor Grand Prix Track & Field
Boston Massachusetts, USA
February 4, 2023
World Athletics Indoor Tour Gold meeting, photo by Kevin Morris

She added that the 1000 was definitely the hardest of the middle distances where you effectively had to run an 800 and then keep going for an extra 200m at an 800 pace”.

The attempt didn’t quite come off and she had to settle for a win in 2:34.53. She summed up her effort: “I was going to go for it, and I think when you are running at that pace it’s going to hit at some point. Unfortunately, it hit a bit too soon, but I had to go for it, and I had to run those times at the start. Jenny Selman did an amazing job as a pacer, I was just trying to stick on that light, but it just got away from me towards the end”.

Laura Muir takes 3000m at the 2019 European Indoors, photo by Getty Images for European Athletics

Finally, she gave her thoughts on Istanbul, at which she is only in the 1500: “I know I’m in a good spot, but it’s hard to get it perfect. I gave it a good shot today [the 1000] and I’m feeling strong in training. It’s got to be the gold. It’s the only color medal I’ve won there so I want to keep that record up”.

Laura Muir, Melissa Courtney (now Bryant), 2019 European Indoor 3000m, Glasgow, photo by Getty Images for European Athletics

Another stat that she is aware of is that Colin Jackson won three European and four World Indoor medals, seven in all,  With four European and two World, Laura is one behind.

Laura Muir takes the 2018 European Outdoors, photo by European Athletics




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