WHEN Laura Muir attempts to break the 1000m record in Glasgow early next year, there will be one person sitting in the stands who is more invested than most in her success.

Andy Young has coached Muir since 2012 and has taken her from a teenager with potential into a true world-class runner.

2019 may have been a success for Muir – she won two European Indoor Championship gold medals – but she is aiming to start 2020 off on an even better foot, with a world record.

Muir will attempt to break the 1000m indoor world record, currently held by Maria Mutola, at the Muller Indoor grand Prix in Glasgow in February. And Young, who knows better than anyone what Muir is capable of, is quietly confident.

“Of course I think it’s possible for Laura to break the record, it was my idea for her to go for it,” he said.

“We’ll see what happens but if we can get a good, healthy spell of training in the lead-up, that set her up nicely. She’ll have a good go at it.”

Muir has already had a tilt at the record, two years ago. However, despite coming within a whisker of Mutola’s mark of 2 minutes 30.94 seconds, the Scot fell short by just under a second. So the fact the 26-year-old is not already a world record holder is, says Young, possibly down to him.

“When we tried 2 years ago, she broke the British and European record but I’m pretty sure she could have broken the world record too, “ he said.

“But I probably made her train just that little bit too hard that week. She still ran within a second of the world record but this time, I’ll try and not overcook it the week of the race and we’ll see what happens.”

The signs are looking positive for Muir. Despite a heavily disrupted lead-up to the World Championships in October due to illness and injury, she crossed the line in 3 minutes 55.76 seconds but was only fifth. So a global major championship medal still eludes her but Young believes that had she run the race with slightly different tactics, she may have ended 2019 as a World Championship medallist. It is is not though, in Muir’s DNA to sit back and let things happen around her.

“I saw the clock coming through and I thought wow, this is fast,” Young said of the world 1500m final.

“Laura wanted to go for the win against Sifan (Hassan).

“If she’d just sat back a little, she might well have picked up a medal. But she wasn’t conscious of how fast it was. To run 3:55 and not get a medal, is unthinkable.”

The enduring image of Muir at the end of that World Championship final was of her looking exhausted, having given it everything. She is known in the athletics world and beyond as an athlete who gets absolutely every last ounce of energy out of herself. But Young reveals that she has not always been a work-horse, and he has had to coax that side out of her in the seven years they have worked together.

“This is a myth that’s crept up about Laura, about how hard she’s always worked really hard,” said Young.

“When Laura started with me in 2012, she wasn’t one to push herself into the red zone.

“It took two full years, until 2014, to get her to work really, really hard. Don’t get me wrong, she was always a good trainer but she wouldn’t really hurt.

“When she got there though, she really leapt onto the next level."

For Muir to have left the Doha World Championships empty-handed may have been disappointing, but her performance bodes well for 2020.

The Tokyo Olympics are now less than seven months away and if Muir gets her preparation right, she will certainly be a contender for a medal. And while Young agrees that the prospect of the Scot standing on the Olympic podium, even the top step of the Olympic podium, is not an unrealistic goal, he urges a note of caution.

“Being an Olympic champion, even an Olympic medallist, in track and field, because it’s the global sport, it so tough.” he said.

“And the women’s 1500m in particular is ridiculously competitive right now.

“So I think it’s possible that Laura could medal, even gold medal but until you’re on the start-line, I don’t look too far ahead.

“It’s great that she can potentially go even faster then her British record but you never take anything for granted. It’s the Olympics, you have to fight so hard for medals.”