Eilish McColgan has vowed to make the most of treading the boards at today’s Muller Grand Prix in Birmingham, even though the Scot insists her sights are really set on being a main act this summer.
The Dundonian, 26, gets a dress rehearsal for the forthcoming European indoor championships when she races fellow Scot Steph Twell over 3,000 metres at the star-studded meeting which will see Laura Muir take a crack at the 1,000m world record.
But, following a winter without any injuries and valuable training stints in Qatar and Kenya, the Olympic finalist – who took the UK title last weekend – insists there’s finally no holding back.
“The last time I was fit and in personal shape at this time of year was four years ago,” she said.
“The last British Championships I did indoors was six years ago. That’s a long spell away. But I might as well make the most of it. It’s not going to be detrimental to my summer.
“Laura Muir’s proved that. She’s racing every week, smashing records and I’m sure she’ll go out and run just as well. There’s no reason not to do both but it’s not the main priority. It’s a stepping-stone towards London.”
In-form Scot Andy Butchart last night pulled out of his planned 5,000m showdown with Mo Farah, with the four-time Olympic champion set to make Birmingham his last indoor outing. But he wants to go out with a bang after his sub-par cross-country showing in Edinburgh last month.
“It was a wake up call,” Farah said. “Training has gone well and I’m looking forward to racing.
“The last four weeks have been hard work so it will be nice to find out where I am. I’m definitely in better shape than in Edinburgh.”
Dina Asher-Smith has been ruled out after fracturing an ankle. The 21-year-old sprinter, who won Olympic bronze as part of Britain’s 4x100 metres women’s relay team at Rio 2016, misses tomorrow’s meet after rolling her ankle in training on Thursday night.
The British 100m and 200m record-holder had been due to run in the 60m on Saturday but suffered injury in her final training session.
Asher-Smith tweeted: “Last session before the Grand Prix, last reactive jump and I land awkwardly on my foot and fracture it. What are the odds!! Gutted!
“So upset and frustrated but it was a freak accident, one of those unavoidable things in life I guess. Comeback starts now.”
Asher-Smith was not due to compete in next month’s European Indoors Championships as she focuses on August’s World Championships in London.