Successful British Youth & Masters Pent sees PGB youngsters shine
Over 120 athletes competed at last weekend’s British Youth and Masters Pentathlon Championships as 10 new British Champions were crowned across different age groups. The Under 19 fields headlined proceedings with their events also acting as a ranking competition meaning the significance of the competition was even higher. At the end of a competitive day it was Georgina Mitchell (U19G) and George Budden (U19B) who came out on top to claim the respective titles.
Sunday also saw Issy Colwell (U15G) and Rudi Bruijn-Yard (U15B) crowned as Champions with Saturday’s honours going to Sabrina Jones (U13G), Blake Hedley (U13B), Tierney Sharp (U17G), George Simpson (U17B), Denise Silk (Masters Women) and Ed Norton (Masters Men).
Story of Saturday
Under 17 Boys & Masters Men
The 2017 Championships began with the Under 17 Boys and Masters Men fencing. For the boys, it was Whitgift Modern Pentathlon Academy’s George Simpson who led the way on 13 victories and 6 defeats with Lajos Fazekas topping the Men’s standings with 15 victories and just 4 defeats.
Both age groups then moved to the pool where Tom Wilton recorded the quickest time of 2:04.97 in the Under 17 age group and Ed Norton set the standard in the Masters field with a 100m time of 1:01.49. The ride saw few changes with most of the athletes faring well at Solihull Riding Club. Dan Joyce and Tom Saran both picked up the maximum 300 points in the Under 17 boys with Mark Evans collecting just 1 time fault to lead the Masters standings on 299.
The results from the opening 3 disciplines meant George Simpson led Guy Anderson in the U17 boys event with Lajos Fazekas at the front of the Masters field. Whilst George held off Guy to take Under 17 victory, with Dan Joyce coming through to take bronze, the lead changed in the Masters competition with Ed’s stunning time of 09:32.44 seeing him pip Lajos to the Masters Men title by just 5 points with William Stratemeier taking bronze.
Under 17 Girls & Masters Women
The Under 17 girls and Masters Women were also competing on Saturday, starting their competition in the pool. Yorkshire Pentathlon Club’s Genna Suddes (2:15.66) led the way in the Under 17 girls event with Dacorum MPC’s Denise Silk (1:25.89) heading the Women’s field. As with the corresponding male age groups, the Under 17 Girls and Masters Women categories were amalgamated for their fencing with Denise once again registering the best performance in the Women’s field with an impressive score of 25 victories and 11 defeats. In the Under 17 Girls’ competition, it was Scottish Saltires Olivia Burns who led the way with 24 victories and 12 defeats.
The ride was where North Kent MPC’s Tierney Sharp made her move, a perfect clear round giving her 300 points and the best round of the day. In the Masters Women category, a DNF for Denise and elimination for Northern Ireland’s Suzie Cave meant the order was unchanged with neither athlete collecting any points.
With just 28 seconds separating the top 5 athletes after the first three disciplines, the Under 17 Girls’ laser run turned into one of the most exciting of the weekend. The order of the top 3 changed hands on multiple occasions during the race with Tierney eventually coming out on top ahead of Pentathlon Hereford’s Lottie Trevethan and Wellington College Community MPC’s Becky Storer who moved onto the podium with the 4th quickest laser run in the class.
In the Masters Women’s event, Suzie Case recorded the quickest laser run but current Masters World Champion Denise Silk still held on to take victory with Suzie settling for silver.
Under 13 Girls & Under 13 Boys
The final two age groups competing on Saturday were the youngest – the Under 13 Girls and Under 13 Boys. In the girls’ competition, Leweston Pentathlon Academy’s Darcy Dryden led the way in the swim with a time of 1:15.64 before Whitgift Modern Pentathlon Academy’s Sabrina Jones propelled herself into the lead with a fantastic fencing performance of 23 victories and 5 defeats.
There were 3 clear rounds in the ride, Leweston Pentathlon Academy’s Jessica Stevens winning the discipline by virtue of being closest to the optimum time. It meant Sabrina led Jessica and Mimi Lumb after the opening three disciplines with the order remaining the same after the laser run.
In the boys’ competition, Whitgift Modern Pentathlon Academy’s Sebastian Sparshott recorded the quickest swim of 1:09.45 with Millfield’s Jack Amor topping the fencing standings with 23 victories and just 5 defeats.
Scottish Saltires Elliot Hedley produced a perfect clear round in the ride which gave him an unassailable lead and the youngster eventually took victory ahead of Jack and Whitgift Modern Pentathlon Academy’s Martin Van Domselaar.
Story of Sunday
Under 19 Girls and Boys
The two Under 19 age groups headlined proceedings on the second day of the Championships with their final ranking competition of 2017 being incorporated into the Championships. It was the boys who began the day with their 200m swim and Millfield School’s Nick Laws led the way in 2:02.01 ahead of Jack White and George Budden.
In the fencing hall, it was Jack who fared best with an impressive score of 21 victories, 7 defeats moving him into the lead of the competition. Pentathlon Ireland’s Tim O’Brien finished the discipline standings in 2nd on 19 victories with Ashford School Pentathlon Club’s James Wilton a further 2 victories back in 3rd.
Due to the Under 19 event being a ranking competition, the laser run followed with a thrilling battle between the top 7. The gaps were narrow throughout with James Wilton eventually holding off George Budden, George Case, Toby Price and Tim O’Brien at the end of the discipline.
With James not riding, George B held the advantage ahead of the final discipline and a perfect clear round ensured he took victory with George C second and Toby third.
The disciplines in the girls’ event followed the same order with Yorkshire Pentathlon Club’s Abbie Holyoake recording the quickest time in an incredibly close swimming event; the top 6 separated by less than 2.5 seconds.
It was North Kent MPC’s Laura Sheffield who excelled in the fencing hall with 30 victories and just 6 defeats, 3 victories ahead of Wycliffe College’s Zoe Davison. It meant that Zoe held a slender lead over Olivia Green and Georgina Mitchell ahead of the laser run. The order of the top 3 changed around though with Olivia leading Georgina and Zoe at the end of the combined running and shooting discipline. City of Lancaster Triathlon’s Emma Whitaker and Dacorum MPC’s Alex Bousfield rounded out the top 5 at the end of the ranking competition.
However, it was the ride that would decide the location of the British Under 19 Girls Modern Pentathlon title and with Olivia being eliminated due to two falls, it was Plymouth College’s Georgina who took glory, despite still being an U17 aged athlete. Zoe produced the best round of the day to ensure she finished 2nd with Emma rounding out the podium in 3rd after also picking up the maximum 300 points in the ride.
Under 15 Girls and Under 15 Boys
The Under 15 Boys began their competition in the swimming pool where Leweston Pentathlon Academy’s Liam Openshaw set the pace with an impressive 1:00.81 time. In the fencing hall, it was Rudi Bruijn-Yard who led the way with 19 victories and just 5 defeats, a score that propelled him into an overall lead that he wouldn’t relinquish. Jarvis Lumb recorded the best ride of the day, one of two perfect clear rounds, moving him up to second ahead of the laser run with West Midlands MPC’s Josh Mitchell in 3rd. An exciting final discipline followed but the top 3 crossed the line in the same order as the started meaning Rudi claimed the Under 15 boys title ahead of Jarvis and Josh.
The Under 15 Girls also started their day with the swim where Yorkshire Pentathlon Club’s Olivia Herron headed proceedings thanks to a rapid 1:01.24. Pentathlon Hereford’s Rebecca Wreyford shone on the fencing piste, her score of 20 victories and 4 defeats putting her 2 hits ahead of any other athlete.
Assured riding from the Under 15 girls saw 7 athletes picking up the maximum 300 points but it was Yorkshire Pentathlon Club’s Issy Auchterlonie who claimed the best ride medal by virtue of being closest to the optimum time. The opening 3 disciplines meant Leweston Pentathlon Academy’s Elektra Covell led North Kent MPC’s Isabella Summers and fellow Leweston Academy athlete Issy Colwell ahead of the Laser Run. With the gaps closing throughout, the leading trio found themselves level with 400m to go, and it was Issy who made the decisive break to take Under 15 Girls victory ahead of Isabella and Elektra.