Haruka Kitaguchi is all smiles at the Brussels Diamond League as she clinches another gold medal for Japan at the Diamond League meeting held in Brussels, Belgium, on September 8, 2023.

Kitaguchi first made headlines last month when she dominated the Women’s Javelin Throw event at the World Athletics Championships in Budapest. This marked a milestone in her career as she claimed her first ever gold medal, making her team and countrymen proud with her achievement. In addition to this, she also became the third Japanese woman to ever win a gold medal in the history of the World Athletics Championships.

Kitaguchi started out by placing fourth in the competition. However, she moved to the top of the leaderboard when she unexpectedly threw a remarkable 66.73 meters in the  sixth and final round. With this feat, she was able to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics, making her the first Japanese to do so.

Kitaguchi exalted

“I’m too excited to understand the situation,” Kitaguchi said. “My body feels so light. I feel like being in the air about 3 centimetres above the ground.”

When Kitaguchi was asked how she felt after making her final shot, she said, “I don’t remember at all. I have to watch the video. I got too noisy. I only remember I screamed.”

She did the same thing on September 8, saving her best performance for the last round of the competition. Kitaguchi hit 67.38 meters with her javelin in the 6th round, breaking her own record from the previous event and locking down the top spot.

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“She put this competition to bed with the final throw. What is it about Haruka Kitaguchi and throwing big late?”, the commentator said in the background.

“67.38 is the world lead, the furthest throw in the world this year, beating her own.” , he added.

After announcing Kitaguchi as the winner of the evening, she erupted into a big smile and got hugged one by one by her competitors to congratulate her.

Women’s Javelin Throw Results:

  1. Haruka Kitaguchi (JPN), 67.38
  2. Victoria Hudson (AUT), 64.65
  3. Līna Mūze-Sirmā (LAT), 63.00
  4. Flor Denis Ruiz Hurtado (COL), 62.51
  5. Nikola Ogrodníková (CZE), 60.18
  6. Tori Peeters (NZL), 59.93
  7. Annu Rani (IND), 57.74
  8. Liveta Jasiūnaitė (LTU), 56.70.

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The photo above is from a YouTube screen grab


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