Thomas Holmes,18, was awarded first place in the Javelin at the U20 Senior National Championship held at Bedford last weekend. He will be competing in the British Athletics Championship at the Manchester Regional Arena from June 25-27 and his goal is to be selected for the GB team at the European Championships in Estonia in July.
Thomas, who has just finished completing his A-levels at St John’s, Marlborough, told Marlborough.news, “The next competition in Manchester is the last in the qualification time for the selection. If you throw 70m you are automatically selected.” Thomas threw an impressive 69.44m last weekend.
Currently training with Mark Bradford at Andover Athletics Club, Thomas’s interest in the javelin was nurtured at Marlborough Athletics Club. In 2017 he achieved first place in the English Schools U15 competition and in 2019 he won the U17 Nationals at Bedford.
However, the pandemic has not made things easy. Thomas said, “It’s not been ideal and I was not able to train much over the winter due to lockdowns. Usually in the winter I try to improve my technique.”
So it’s been an intensive training schedule since lockdown eased. “When you’re throwing well it’s satisfying watching the javelin sail out. It’s quite addictive. When you throw well once you want to do it over and over again,” Thomas commented.
And Thomas has advice to younger javelin athletes. “At a young age, don’t think about distance but focus on creating a strong technical base that you can improve on when you’re older.”
Thomas hopes to go to Loughborough University in the autumn to study Sports Management and his dream is to become an Olympic javelin thrower, perhaps in the 2028 Olympics in the US.
If you would like to watch Thomas competing this weekend the British Athletics Championships are being televised on BBC 2. We wish him well.