Britain’s top modern pentathletes have their first opportunity to achieve qualification places for the 2012 Olympic Games when they compete at the World Cup Final in London next week (9 and 10 July).
The British team are honing their preparations for the World Cup Final in London and the European Championships in Kent later in the month by training at altitude at Font Romeu in the Pyrenees.
Five British athletes have qualified to compete at the World Cup Final, which as part of the 2012 sports testing programme is a London Prepares Series event.
The GB team for the World Cup Final is:
Men – Jamie Cooke and Nick Woodbridge
Women – Heather Fell, Freyja Prentice and Mhairi Spence
The winner of both the men’s and women’s competitions at the World Cup Final achieve qualification places for 2012.
Three weeks later the top eight finishers per gender at the European Championships at Medway in Kent also achieve 2012 quota places.
Jan Bartu, Pentathlon GB’s Performance Director, said: “We’ve been training at between 1800 to 2100m altitude. It’s not bone-breaking, but the effects of training for two weeks at this altitude are significant.
“The focus here is very much on training and getting the job done. They’ve been working very, very hard.”
The training at Font Romeu has included fencing with sparring partners from the Czech Republic and Hungary.
The men go into World Cup Final action on Saturday 9 July with the women competing on Sunday 10 July.
The fencing and swimming elements of the World Cup Final take place at the Crystal Palace National Sports Centre, a non-2012 venue.
The athletes then move to Greenwich Park for the riding and the run/shoot. Greenwich Park will host the same disciplines at London 2012.
The GB team is based at the Pentathlon GB high performance centre at the University of Bath.
Olympic qualification events for GB pentathletes this year are as follows:
- World Cup Final – London, 9-10 July – winner achieves an Olympic quota place
- European Championships – Medway, Kent, 28 July-1 August – top eight achieve Olympic quota places
- World Championships – Moscow, Russia, 8-14 September – top three achieve Olympic quota places