News & Updates

15 July 2023 • Para Athletics

Robinson adds shot silver to growing global collection

Holly Robinson claimed her maiden global shot medal with an Oceania record in the Stade Charlety. Credit: (Peter Milsom).

After just missing out on a medal in the specialist javelin event at the Paris 2023 Para Athletics World Championships on Wednesday, Holly Robinson bounced back to win a magnificent silver medal in the women’s shot F46 courtesy of an Oceania record throw of 11.59m.

Competing in the shot for the first time at a Para Athletics World Championships since finishing seventh way back at the 2011 edition in Christchurch, Robinson produced a mature display to secure a podium spot behind American Noelle Malkamaki who set a jaw-dropping three world records during an historic competition topped by a mighty 13.32m.

With the women’s shot put F46 recently re-introduced into the major championship programme the event has given the Kiwi a fresh focus and she showed her versatility to claim shot silver and add to her four previous world medals won in the javelin (three silver and one bronze).

Robinson, the Paralympic javelin champion, underwent elbow surgery in January and was understandably not quite her best in her specialist event finishing fourth, but today the 28-year-old Dunedin-based athlete delivered in the shot circle.

In round one, the Kiwi took an immediate hold on silver with a 10.92m effort to trail the outstanding Malkamaki who fired out a huge 12.31m in round.

The competition stepped up in class in round two. While Robinson added 24cm on to her four-year-old Oceania record with a 11.59m effort, Malkamaki effectively sealed the competition by enhancing the world record of Yukiko Saito of Japan by 55cm with that gargantuan 13.02m hurl.

In round three, Robinson tossed the 4kg orb out to 11.19m and in round four registered a foul – the same round where Malkamaki further underlined her class by bettering the world record for a second time, unleashing a 13.25m effort.

Robinson committed a second successive foul in the fifth stanza as Japan’s Yukiko Saito, sat in provisional bronze, crept a little closer to the New Zealander with an 11.35m throw.

Saito executed her best for the day in round six, posting 11.42m, but could not deny Robinson silver, who herself recorded 11.27m. Malkamaki then capped a truly remarkable competition by saving her best for last powering the shot out to her third world record of the day and a mighty 13.32m hurl.

Robinson, who is coached by Raylene Bates, said: “It feels cool (to podium in the shot). I wasn’t expecting silver I thought bronze would have been the tussle, but I’m super stoked and over the moon with silver.

“I had some clear goals with shot, and I knew what I needed to do to get the distances that I wanted, I’m just glad it all worked out on the day.

“I was pretty happy with how I threw. We had a solid field, and anyone could have taken those second and third spots, so I’m really happy I got the distance.

“It seems weird that I will going into the Paralympics as the world shot silver medallist and fourth in javelin, so it is kind of backwards for me. But I’m really excited to see what the next year holds. It would be cool to compete in two events and medal in two events at the Paris Paralympics.”

Danielle Aitchison is the next Kiwi in action at the Paris 2023 Para Athletics Championships. The winner of the women’s 100m T36 silver medal will seek a second podium finish in the women’s 200m T36 event, which takes place as a straight final at 5.15am on Sunday morning.

***Follow all the action on TVNZ+. Note, the coverage will be taken from the world feed so we cannot guarantee that all events featuring Kiwi athletes will be shown.

***For results go here