World Athletic Championships: Laura Muir excited for new start despite missing out on medal

Muir missed out on a medal but is hopeful of a new start ahead of Paris next summer  (Getty Images)
Muir missed out on a medal but is hopeful of a new start ahead of Paris next summer (Getty Images)

With 200metres to go of Tuesday night’s 1500m final, Faith Kipyegon kicked for the line and Laura Muir simply couldn’t go with her.

As she crossed the finish, there wasn’t quite the heartache of missing out on a medal and a return to her languishing outside the top three at a major outdoor event as had been the case before medals at the Tokyo Olympics and previous World Athletics Championships.

Instead, she saw it as the start of a rebirth of sorts fresh into a partnership with a new coach in John Bigg and finally back running with a smile on her face.

She had walked out on a training camp with her coach Andy Young at the start of the year before the pair split, bringing an end to a 12-year-old partnership. Arriving in Budapest, she had declared herself back being happy again.

Following the final, she echoed that same emotion. “I was just happy for the race and that’s the most important thing,” she said. “Obviously, I wanted to come and try and back up what I did last year but I gave it everything I could and it wasn’t good enough to get in the medals unfortunately.”

When Muir and training partner Jemma Reekie quit that South African camp, Young insisted there had been no bust-up and they were simply worried about his health. News quickly followed that both had ended their partnership with him.

It left the trained vet feeling like she was starting her career all over again just 18 months out from the Paris Olympics.

“It’s been very, very hard,” she said. “It’s very different. I’ve been used to a certain situation for 12 years. It’s different but it’s very positive. It’s going to take time. You can’t rush these things. It’s not an excuse for the way I ran today. I’m proud of the way I ran. I did the best I could.”

For her, the message was simply judge me on Paris next summer.

She said: “Next year is the big one. There are so many things I’ve realised we can change to make me better and stronger. There has been no new stimulus. There are so many things to make me stronger and fitter. I’m excited what we can do next year. It’s looking positive.”

Muir readily admitted she was undone by the undulating pace, herself preferring to get into a rhythm and then whip up that tempo towards the finish.

When the kick came, she did not have the speed to go with Kipyegon, comfortably the best athlete of her generation and one who had broken three world records over three different distances and just 50 days earlier this summer.