Natalia Coyle, the 19 years old from Ashbourne, Co Meath and a student at Trinity College became the first ever Irish Pentathlete to qualify for the finals of the World Cup in Palm Springs Valley in California.
After a solid placement of 14th in the semi-final, Coyle fully deserves her place in the final.
The Irish Pentathlon Federation (started just five years ago by a small group of parents), and Pentathlon Ireland has coach Lindsey Weedon to thank for all the momentum the sport has gained over the past 18 months. A former competitor herself, Weedon has brought along three promising pentathletes with a background in Tetrathlon, a sport practiced by the IPC (Irish Pony Club) involving four of the five sports of Pentathlon.
Natalia was also a hockey player, and did running and riding for her school teams.
After just six weeks of training, Natalya competed in her very first pentathlon event at the Swiss Nationals, and surprised everyone when she qualified for the Moscow World Cup last year.
With more experience under her belt, her scores increased and she was able to rally support from the Irish Sports Council and the Olympic Council of Ireland to begin a more professional training regimen. She placed 5th overall at the Budapest Indoor, before heading for Rancho Mirage. We will bring you news of Natalia’s performance in the finals here on SportsNewsIreland.