Olympic Council of Ireland scholarship athlete Natalya Coyle has qualified for the final of World Cup 4 in Chengdu. The 20 year old Meath athlete didn’t enjoy the best of performances today but did enough to finish in 17th position and with the top 18 progressing to the final to be held on Saturday.
Natalya was drawn in semi final B and began the day with the swimming event. A disappointing time of 2:24.45 gave her 1068 pentathlon points and placed her down in 24th position. Several other athletes found the pool to be slow and as a result the points differences were very close with Natalya only 50 points behind the athlete in 18th.
Onto the fencing and Natalya began well with a scoring rate of 50-50 for the first 12 fights. A good run of four straight victories added to her points tally and Natalya finished with 12 victories and 15 defeats for 776 pentathlon points. Despite finishing 13th in the fencing event, Natalya only moved up to 21st on the overall rankings.
Onto the combined event and Natalya started in 21st position on 1.27 behind the overall event leader and just six seconds behind the athlete in 18th. After a shaky warm up on the range, Natalya showed her composure to complete her first shoot series in 24 seconds. Solid running on her first kilometre meant she came back onto the range in 19th position. Another solid shoot of 24seconds meant she left the range in 17th position and qualification position and after a her second run lap came onto the range in 15th position. The final shoot was a nervy affair with Natalya taking three attempts to hit her first shot. She managed to get into the flow after that and successfully completed the last shoot in 40seconds and left the range in 17th position for her last kilometre run. Natalya ran well on the last lap and was never threatened for her position and crossed the finish line in 17th position.
Natalya will compete in the Women’s final on Saturday where the 36 athletes that qualified for the final will compete in all 5 disciplines. There will be live streaming of this final from the UIPM website (www.pentathlon.org). Natalya will be looking for the highest placing possible to gain points for the World Cup standings and hopefully qualification for the World Cup Final event to be held in the UK in July.
The 2011 World Cup Series:
· World Cup 1 – USA, 23rd – 27th February
· World Cup 2 – Italy, 14th – 17th March
· World Cup 3 – Hungary, 5th – 8th May
· World Cup 4 – China, 26th – 29th May
· World Cup Final – Great Britain, 9th – 10th July (Olympic Qualification Event*)
The top 36 ranked athletes from WC 1-4 will be invited to contest the World Cup Final
Further information on the Pentathlon and the World cup series:
· Union International de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM) – www.pentathlon.org
· www.facebook.com – Search pages for “Pentathlon Ireland”
· Pentathlon Ireland – www.pentathlon.ie
*Olympic Qualification (1st June 2011 – 31st May 2012)
There are two main ways Irish athletes will look to qualify for the London 2012 Olympic Games:
1. Through an official Olympic qualification competition
§ 2011 World Cup Final – Winner of this gains Olympic qualification
§ 2011 World Championships – Three best ranked athletes gain Olympic Qualification
§ 2011 European Championships – Eight best ranked athletes gain Olympic Qualification
§ 2012 World Championships – Three best ranked athletes gain Olympic Qualification
2. Through the Pentathlon World Ranking (PWR)
§ Places will be allocated to top ranked athletes on the PWR who have not previously qualified an Olympic Qualification spot. Athlete’s three best performances from 1st June 2011 – 31st May 2012 will be used for the PWR.
§ Only two athletes per nation (per gender) can compete at the Olympic Games so where nations qualify more than two athletes, extra places will be awarded to the PWR qualification system.
§ Athletes will gain ranking points based on their final positions in competitions; different competitions are worth different
· Level 1 – World Cup final and World Championships are worth the most ranking points. 1st = 80points
· Level 2 – World Cups and other major championships. 1st = 60points
Level 3 – Other international competitions