The excellent progress made by Irish Pentathletes in 2011 and 2012 to date can be seen from the latest world rankings list and in this update brought to you courtesy of Pentathlon Ireland.
After four world cup competitions spanning the globe, Ireland have THREE Pentathletes ranked in the top 50 in the World. Natalya Coyle leads the way in 23rd on the women’s standings, while Arthur Lanigan-O’Keeffe is close behind in 25th and Eanna Bailey in 48th in the Men’s rankings.
Coyle made three out of four finals in the 2012 world cup series, finishing 18th in the USA, 32nd in Brazil and an amazing 10th in Russia. Natalya narrowly missed out making it ‘a full house’ by one place on qualifying for the final in World Cup 3 in Hungary.
Lanigan-O’Keeffe, having never made a final before 2012, astounded the Modern Pentathlon world by qualifying for the first three finals in USA, Brazil and Hungary. His placings of 25th, 20th and 22nd respectively, give an indication of the potential of an athlete who is still in a junior category for Modern Pentathlon. A slight muscle strain prevented him from contesting World Cup 4 in Russia as a precaution for the upcoming World Championships and World Cup Final competitions.
Bailey demonstrated the true nature of determination having missed out on finals at the first three world cup competitions by small margins, placing 17th, 14th and 18th with the top 12 progressing to the finals. His fighting spirit was rewarded at the 4th World Cup in Russia where he qualified for his first final at World Cup level. An impressive performance saw him finish the event in 14th position giving an indication of what he is capable of for the future. While 48th is probably not enough to qualify directly for the World Cup final, having a World ranking within the top 50 is hugely significant.
With the top 36 athletes now heading to China to contest the World Cup Final at the end of May, Coyle and Lanigan-O’Keeffe can now book their tickets. The World Cup Final is a level one competition and valuable Olympic ranking points will be at stake for the two young Irish athletes as they pursue their Olympic ambitions in China.
Some important 2012 Dates for Your Diary:
7th – 13th May – World Championships. Rome, ITALY
26th-27th May – World Cup Final. Chegdu, CHINA
31st May – End of Olympic Qualification period
1st June – Confirmation of athlete qualified for London 2012 Olympic Games
5th June – Pentathlon Ireland Media Day for qualified athletes – TBC
4th – 10th July – European Championships, Sofia, BULGARIA
11th August – Olympic Games Modern Pentathlon Men’s event
12th August – Olympic Games Modern Pentathlon Women’s event