After topping the 2019 Men’s World Cup standings at the end of the four regular season events, Joe Choong will lead an 8-strong Pentathlon GB line at the World Cup Final in Tokyo. The 24-year-old has developed into one of the best modern pentathletes in the world in recent seasons but has gone from strength-to-strength in 2019 with two silver medals and a 5thplace finish in his three WC appearances. That placed the Brit 15 points ahead of the Czech Republic’s Jan Kuf at the top of the standings.
Choong will be joined by Jamie Cooke and Tom Toolis in the men’s individual competition in Japan with both athletes also finishing inside the top 10 of the World Cup standings to qualify for the Final. Current World Champion Cooke enjoyed a solid World Cup season, the highlight coming with a 4th place finish at World Cup 3 in Szekesfehervar. Meanwhile, Romford’s Toolis has enjoyed comfortably the best World Cup season of his career. The 26-year-old started the season with his best WC finish of 9th in Cairo before bettering that with a place on the wider podium (6th) at World Cup 2 in Sofia. The competition in Japan will also mark the first World Cup Final appearance of his career.
Just 36 athletes will compete in each gender at the World Cup, limiting the number of entrants to 3 per nation in the individual competition. With four British women ranked inside the top 16, Kate French, Francesca Summers and Jess Varley will be the trio who compete in the individual competition.
After claiming a third World Cup victory of her career in Prague last month, Gravesend’s French will head into the World Cup Final on fine form. The 28-year-old, who sits 4th in the World Cup standings, was joined on the podium in the Czech Capital by Varley, the first time two female athletes from the same nation have stood together on a WC podium since February 2016. The bronze medal was Varley’s first at World Cup level as the 24-year-old backed up her 7th place finish at World Cup 3 in Szekesfehervar where she finished as the lead Brit. Dorking’s Summers is another athlete to have enjoyed two World Cup PBs during 2019 with a 6th place finish at the season opener followed by a 4th place at World Cup 2 in Sofia.
The mixed relay will see World Cup 4 relay winners Jo Muir and Sam Curry team up once again for Pentathlon GB. Dumfries’ Muir recorded two individual top 10 finishes of her own during 2019 and she currently ranks 12th in the World Cup standings. Curry’s best individual result came at World Cup 3 in Hungary where he finished 31st, however he ended the regular World Cup series on a high with the mixed relay triumph in Prague.
The competition doubles up as the Olympic test event meaning it will follow the Olympic format with the fencing ranking rounds taking place a day before the rest of the competition. The mixed relay will be held on the final day giving eight British athletes the chance to compete in Japan. It is also the first chance for athletes to secure themselves an Olympic qualifying spot with a place up for grabs for the winner in each gender.
Thursday 27th June – women’s and men’s fencing ranking rounds
Friday 28th June – women’s final
Saturday 29th June – men’s final
Sunday 30th June – mixed relay
Courtesy of Pentathlon GB