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HOLMES Kelly
HOLMES Kelly

Kelly HOLMES

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Middle-distance runner who recovered from injury to claim double Olympic gold at the age of 34.

Fighting spirit

Although she showed early promise as a runner, Kelly Holmes gave up the sport to join the army at the age of 18 and become British army judo champion. She returned to competitive athletics after watching the 1992 Barcelona Games on television.

Injury problems

Holmes' career was plagued by injuries. Barely recovered from a stress fracture, she placed only fourth in the 800m at the 1996 Atlanta Games. In 2000, a ruptured calf left her only six weeks to train for the Sydney Games. Still, she managed to win a bronze medal in the 800m and placed seventh in the 1,500m.

The perfect year

She arrived at the 2004 Athens Games in perfect shape. In the 800m final, Holmes moved past defending champion Maria Mutola and held off her other rivals. The finish was so close that Holmes didn’t know she’d won – she did so by five hundredths of a second. Five nights later, in the final of the 1,500m, Holmes burst into the lead around the final turn and earned her second gold.

An athletics hero

At 34, she was the oldest woman to win either the 800m or the 1,500m, let alone both of them. Kelly Holmes continues to represent Great Britain’s sporting legacy abroad and campaigns for children’s sport.

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Gallery

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Mens 800m Medal Ceremony

ATHENS - AUGUST 28: Gold medalist Kelly Holmes of Great Britain celebrates on the podium during the medal ceremony of the women's 1,500 metre event on August 28, 2004 during the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in the Sports Complex in Athens, Greece. Tatyana Tomashova of Russia came second and Maria Cioncan of Romania came third. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kelly Holmes
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Athens 2004-Athletics-1500m-HOLMES Kelly (GBR) 1st.
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Athens 2004-Athletics-1500m-HOLMES Kelly (GBR) 1st andphotographers.
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Athens 2004-Athletics-1500m-HOLMES Kelly (GBR) 1st andTOMASHOVA Tatyana (RUS) 2nd.
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Athens 2004-Athletics-HOLMES Kelly (GBR) 1st, RODRIGUEZ Natalia (ESP) 10th and DOUMA-HUSSAR Carmen (CAN) 9th.
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Womens 1500m Finals

ATHENS - AUGUST 28: Kelly Holmes of Great Britain celebrates after she won gold in the women's 1,500 metre final on August 28, 2004 during the Athens 2004 Summer Olympic Games at the Olympic Stadium in the Sports Complex in Athens, Greece. (Photo by Ian Waldie/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Kelly Holmes
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Results

  • Games
    Result
    Sport
    Event
  • G 3:57.90
    Athletics
    1500m women
    G 1:56.38
    Athletics
    800m women
  • B 01:56.80
    Athletics
    800m women

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