Defending champion Georgia Pipes produced a great all-round performance to finish second and pick up another medal at the Milan Kadlec Memorial in Prague on Saturday (14th May). Meanwhile, first-year Junior athlete Georgina Summers finished 16th after being eliminated in the ride, the final discipline of the day, having been well placed in 4th beforehand.
In the Men’s competition on Sunday (15th May), an impressive display by Youth A athlete Harry Sykes saw him finish as the top Brit in 12th. All four boys were closely matched as Adam Price and Jamie Harper finished in 14th and 19th respectively, whilst Bradley Sutton ended up in 22nd after being eliminated in his ride.
The women’s competition started in the fencing salle where Pipes showed her experience of being a second year Junior, securing some great hits and picking up 16 victories to leave her in second position. Summers also got some fantastic hits which resulted in 13 victories and 11 defeats, leaving her in 9th after the opening discipline. Pipes picked up an extra two points in the following bonus round meaning she was 24 points behind early leader Anna Samalova.
The Yorkshire born athlete then produced a stunning performance in the pool, her time of 2:12.34 over 2 seconds quicker than anybody else and moving her into the lead. Summers’ 2:20.51 was the 7th quickest swim time and moved her up a place to 8th in the overall standings to round off a successful morning for both British girls.
Summers, who currently trains at North Kent Modern Pentathlon Club, then produced a brilliant combined event, the second quickest of the day, to jump up to 4th place overall. Pipes’ time of 14:00.96 saw her slip to 2nd, 5 points behind France’s Pulcherie Delhalle. Germany’s Anna Matthes separated the two Brits but the top four were separated by just 12 points ahead of the ride meaning they were all still in contention victory.
Unfortunately Summers suffered four refusals and consequently elimination in her round to drop to 16th. However, it was still an extremely encouraging competition for the 18 year-old. Meanwhile, the top three all held their nerve and produced perfect rounds to pick up the maximum 300 points. This ensured there was no movement in the medal positions and meant Pipes, who trains at Pentathlon GB’s National Training Centre at the University of Bath, had to settle for the silver medal.
The Men’s competition followed the same format, starting with the fencing, and all four Brits found things tough to begin with. Sykes and Sutton, both still Youth A athletes, picked up 13 wins to finish the discipline in 16th place, ahead of Price in 21st with 11 victories and Harper in 27th with 7. However, all four continued to battle well throughout the remainder of the day and produced some encouraging performances in the remaining disciplines.
Sutton produced a brilliant swim, breaking the 2 minute barrier with his time of 1:58.88 the second quickest time of the day. Sykes’ 2:07.08 was the 13th best of the competition with Harper’s 2:08.33 the 18th quickest in a tightly matched field. Price’s 2:13.77 meant he remained 21st overall.
The Yorkshire born athlete excelled in his favoured combined event discipline though with a fantastic time of 11:47.37, the 8th quickest of the day moving him up to 17th. Harper also climbed the standings to 23rd with his time of 12:15.03. Sykes’ 12:10.40 saw him rise to 15th in the overall standings, one place and one point behind teammate Sutton ahead of the concluding ride.
However, the two Hartpury based athletes had differing fortunes in the ride as Sykes produced a brilliant clear round to pick up the maximum 300 points and finish 12th whilst Sutton unfortunately suffered two dismounts and therefore elimination, dropping him to 22nd in the final standings. It was a very promising competition for both athletes though as they were among the youngest competitors with many of the other participants already being in the Junior age group.
Price and Harper also produced great rides with Price knocking down one pole to pick up 293 points and move up to 14th position while Harper matched Sykes’ perfect round to finish 19th. It meant all four Brits improved on their finishing positions from the Polish Junior International 2 weeks ago.
The next Junior competition is the Junior European Championships which begin on Monday 6th June in Drzonkow, Poland.
Report courtesy of Pentathlon GB