Holmes makes history with golden double

Kelly Holmes tonight ran her way into the history books by striking gold in the 1500 metres.

Kelly Holmes tonight ran her way into the history books by striking gold in the 1500 metres.

It completed a dream double for the 34-year-old from Kent, after she won gold in the 800m here on Monday - and she did it in breathtaking style by setting a new British record with her winning time of 3:57.90.

Victory in the Olympic Stadium meant Holmes became the first Briton for 84 years to achieve the Olympic middle-distance double, a feat last performed by Albert Hill in the 1920 Games in Antwerp - although the women's 1500m was only introduced in the 1972 Games.

There was huge British support in the stadium when the final got under way and it was business as usual as Holmes continued her tactic of racing at the back of the back but keeping the early leader in her sights.

She was eighth out of the 12 at the bell but moved up to third at the 150m mark and then made it look oh-so-easy as she cruised clear with 50 metres to go and powered over the line.

This time - unlike Monday's close finish - Holmes was smiling before she crossed the line, fully aware that she had won her second Olympic title.

Holmes went one better than Britain's former middle-distance stars Sebastian Coe and Steve Ovett, who tried and failed to do the coveted double.

Coe, one of Holmes' heroes, won gold at 1500m and Ovett triumphed over 800m, but neither man managed it at both distances.

The former army sergeant, who put the secret of her success down to a diet of cashew nuts and ice baths, is two years older than British sprinter Linford Christie was when he took the 100m title at the Barcelona Games in 1992.

Holmes' double triumph in the space of five days in the Olympic Stadium banished the memory of the last time she was in Athens, at the 1997 World Championships, when a ruptured Achilles tendon ended her 1500m hopes in the heats.

She also made up for her previous Olympic 1500m performances. In Atlanta in 1996 she finished 11th and four years ago in Sydney she was seventh.

This was Britain's 28th medal of the Athens Games, equalling the total won four years ago, although there were 11 golds in Sydney compared to the eight here so far, with boxer Amir Khan hoping to strike gold tomorrow.

News
Jacqueline Bisset has claimed that young women today are obsessed with being 'hot', rather than 'charming', 'romantic' or 'beautiful'
people
Arts and Entertainment
Lena Dunham
booksLena Dunham's memoirs - written at the age of 28 - are honest to the point of making you squirm
Arts and Entertainment
A bit rich: Maggie Smith in Downton Abbey
tvDownton Abbey review: It's six months since we last caught up with the Crawley clan
Sport
Frank Lampard and his non-celebration
premier leagueManchester City vs Chelsea match report from the Etihad Stadium
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Life and Style
A new app has been launched that enables people to have a cuddle from a stranger
techNew app offers 'PG alternative' to dating services like Tinder
Sport
Greg Dyke insists he will not resign as Football Association chairman after receiving a watch worth more than £16,000 but has called for an end to the culture of gifts being given to football officials
football
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden sings his heart out in his second audition
tvX Factor: How did the Jakes - and Charlie Martinez - fare?
Sport
premier league
Arts and Entertainment
'New Tricks' star Dennis Waterman is departing from the show after he completes filming on two more episodes
tvOnly remaining original cast-member to leave crime series
Sport
Mario Balotelli celebrates his first Liverpool goal
premier leagueLiverpool striker expressed his opinion about the 5-3 thriller with Leicester - then this happened
News
Britain's shadow chancellor Ed Balls (L) challenges reporter Rob Merrick for the ball during the Labour Party versus the media soccer match,
peopleReporter left bleeding after tackle from shadow Chancellor in annual political football match
Arts and Entertainment
Female fans want more explicit male sex in Game of Thrones, George R R Martin says
tvSpoiler warning: Star of George RR Martin's hit series says viewers have 'not seen the last' of him/her
News
i100
News
i100
Sport
Plenty to ponder: Amir Khan has had repeated problems with US immigration because of his Muslim faith and now American television may shun him
boxing
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments