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Last Updated: Saturday, 28 August, 2004, 21:32 GMT 22:32 UK
Coe: Kelly was phenomenal
By Sebastian Coe
Double Olympic 1500m champion

Kelly Holmes celebrates with her 1500m gold medal

Kelly Holmes ran a perfect race.

She is in a very rich seam of form right now and she didn't put a foot wrong.

She sat back and made her move at the right moment - it was a consummate piece of running.

I was lucky enough to present Kelly with her 800m gold medal and it was an honour to share a few moments with her after that race.

Historically, only two woman have achieved what she has done before, so Kelly has joined a very select band of athletes.

And the way she has done it has been truly phenomenal, given the lack of confidence she had just a few weeks ago.

She has run with such purpose.

Historically, the odds have always been against people doing the double.

This was her last chance and she realised that
A lot of athletes have tried, but few have actually done it.

Kelly is so well conditioned that when you get to this level, the races themselves are almost days off compared to what you go through in training.

But doubling up is more a mental than a physical thing.

The great thing was that Kelly held it together in the day off she had between the semi-finals and the final.

It is very easy to sit back and start thinking about what you have achieved rather than what is around the corner.

But she kept her focus and posed questions that none of the other athletes were able to answer.

She has brought confidence to her running and I think she realised that the Olympics isn't coming round again.

It is amazing what a mind-concentrating process that is.

She knew this was her last Games and she made sure she was not going to let it pass by.

She had the mental resolve and will to overcome all her setbacks and after that she was going to be the equal of anything thrown at her here.

This was her last chance and she realised that.

You only had to look at her muscle tone and see the look in her eyes.

She was up for this championship and was better prepared than many of the athletes out there.

Lord Coe was speaking on BBC Television after Kelly Holmes' 1500m victory.





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23 Aug 04  |  Athletics


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