Hollie Arnold celebrates winning a fifth successive gold in the javelin in Paris. Pic: Getty Images

Thunderbolt Thrower Hollie Arnold Completes A Fabulous Five World Para Gold


By Gareth James

Hollie Arnold triumphed in a thrilling javelin battle to bag her fifth successive World Para Athletics Championship gold in Paris.

The 29-year-old won a stupendous four-way contest in the F46 event to confirm her status as one of Britain’s greatest athletes.

Arnold, coached by David Turner, maintained her domination of the event that goes all the way back to her first title in Lyon 10 years ago – but it took a throw of over 40 metres to take gold.

“I’m really overwhelmed and just so happy,” said Arnold. “It meant so much to me.

“My first ever World Championships was back in 2013 in Lyon and to be able to come here ten years later and win my fifth consecutive world title – it’s just amazing.

Hollie Arnold won a thrilling javelin battle with a fourth round effort that soared over 40metres. Pic: Getty Images

“I’ve thrown the best this year, after a rough few years throwing, so to be able to go out and throw 41m and win this competition – I am so happy.”

Arnold produced when she needed it most with the fourth round 40m plus effort –  something she has achieved only twice since the end of 2019.

It was her sixth world medal after a bronze in 2011 and gave the British team their tenth medal of the championships in the French capital which plays host to the Paralympics next year.

Arnold got off to a great start with an opening attempt of 37.36m, which gave her the lead before New Zealand’s Holly Robinson pushed her down to second with a second-round effort of 38.97m. Arnold only managing 36.59m.

The Brit retook the lead with a huge third attempt of 39.49m however she would be knocked down into second again before the round was over as Serbian Saska Sokolov produced an even better throw of 39.64m.

With her rivals circling, Arnold showed just what an incredible talent she is as in the fourth round she produced an effort that simply wouldn’t be beaten – that 41.06m mark that created clear separation from everyone else.

The tension eased in the fifth round as the field came to grips with Arnold’s 41.06m – the Brit throwing 37.37m – before two almighty scares in the sixth and final round in Paris.

Hollie Arnold kept her cool in the French capital to win a fifth successive javelin title.

First Venezuelan Naibys Daniela Morillo Gil came from almost nowhere to land near the 40-metre mark, only to actually register 39.40m but still good enough for bronze before Sokolov, who remained in second, did the same – however she too was just shy at 39.96m.

Not to be denied the chance to prove she is the best in the world, Arnold threw the best effort of the sixth round, a 39.97m, to close the competition and what followed was an outpouring of joyous emotion from the five-time world champion.

She added: “I was so glad I’d put myself in the position to be last to throw so knowing that Saska, who was in second, didn’t throw further than me I was like ‘Oh my God, please don’t cry’.

“That moment when I realised that I won I was on the floor crying – that’s how much it meant to me.

“It’s testament to my support mechanism, I’ve struggled this year, I’ve had lots going on but the fact I’ve had the psychological point of few and my friends and my family – they all know who they are;

“I just couldn’t be here without them. My parents are just the best, for Tokyo [Paralympics] they couldn’t be there so it was just so nice to have my parents and my boyfriend here flying the flag.”

Arnold’s success came just hours after Deeside’s Sabrina Fortune defended her women’s F20 shot put title.

Great Britain&Northern Ireland medallists:

GOLD: [4] Gavin Drysdale [Men’s T72 100m], Jonathan Broom-Edwards [Men’s T64 high jump], Sabrina Fortune [Women’s F20 shot put], Hollie Arnold [Women’s F46 javelin]

SILVER: [2] Rafi Solaiman [Men’s T72 100m], Sammi Kinghorn [Women’s T53 800m]

BRONZE: [4] Zac Shaw [Men’s T12 100m], Danny Sidbury [Men’s T54 5000m], Maria Lyle [Women’s T35 200m], Sophie Hahn [Women’s T38 100m]


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