LAURA Muir’s sensational start to 2017 continued in Germany last night when the Scot smashed the European indoor 3000 metres record at the IAAF World Indoor Tour leg in Karlsruhe.

Freshly-returned from a three-week training stint in South Africa, the 23-year-old was left in a two-way battle with Olympic silver medallist Hellen Obiri heading into the last lap.

Muir – who broke the UK 5000m record in Glasgow four weeks ago – exploded off the final bend to win in 8:26.41 – the fifth-quickest mark of all time.

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“It was pretty spectacular,” said her coach Andy Muir. “Obiri got a Kenyan record so it was one of the greatest distance races of all time.”

The mark, which surpassed Liz McColgan’s 28-year-old Scottish best, underlines the Rio 2016 finalist’s tag as a red-hot bet for a maiden major championship title at next month’s European Indoors in Belgrade where she will bid for a 1500-3000m double.

Meanwhile, fellow Scot Guy Learmonth lowered his 800 metres indoor personal best for the second time in a week in coming third behind the USA’s Erik Sowinksi in 1:47.04. Learmonth hopes to regain the UK indoor title next weekend in Sheffield to cement his Belgrade bid.

“I won it two years ago and I want it back,” he said. “I feel I’m in shape to do well there and then go for the Euros.”

European 200m champion Dina Asher-Smith equalled the 60m world-lead of 7.14 in the heats before coming second to Jamaica’s Gayon Evans in the final while Andy Pozzi clocked a world-lead of 7.44 to win the 60m hurdles final.

Meanwhile, Andy Butchart also kept up his early-year charge by winning the mile at the Armory Meeting in New York in his first indoor outing at the distance with the Perthshire prospect bolting clear to set a personal best of 3:54.23. Lynsey Sharp was fourth in the 600m behind American rival Ajee Wilson.

Eilidh Doyle maintained her unbeaten start to 2017 by winning the 400m in Mondeville, France, in 53.3 seconds.