2022 NORCECA Modern Pentathlon Championships: Hernandez (GUA) and Rojas (CUB) shine
Sophia Hernandez of Guatemala and Marco Rojas of Cuba rose to the top to be crowned champions of the 2022 NORCECA Championships in the Dominican Republic.
Hernandez (GUA) showed her class throughout the Women’s Final as she finished with the best score in both the Fencing and Riding disciplines before achieving the fastest time in the Laser Run. She was followed home by compatriot Gabriela Fernandez (GUA) with Karol Gonzalez of Mexico taking the bronze medal.
The Championships, held in the Dominican capital of Santo Domingo, also saw a gripping Men’s Final where Cuba completed a clean sweep of the senior podium, with Rojas (CUB) shining a light for team-mates Lester Ders (CUB) and Juan Velasquez (CUB) to follow.
In the NORCECA Junior categories there was more joy for Guatemala with Paula Valencia (GUA) claiming gold while in the men’s category, Lorenzo Macias (MEX) secured top spot.
NORCECA is the governing body of Modern Pentathlon in North & Central America as well as the Caribbean, but South American athletes were also invited to compete as part of an Open category.
The Open category saw Camila Fuenzalida of Argentina, a bronze medallist in the 2021 Junior Pan American Games in Cali (COL), take silver while team-mates Vicente Lima (ARG) and Franco Serrano (ARG) claimed silver and bronze respectively in the men’s category – where Andres Torres of Ecuador claimed the gold.
During the Championships, NORCECA Confederation President Rob Stull OLY (USA) chaired an athletes meeting to answer questions about the future direction of Modern Pentathlon.
President Stull was joined by gold medalist Sophia Hernandez (GUA), who sits on the UIPM Athletes Committee, UIPM Vice President Juan Manzo (MEX), UIPM Treasurer John Helmick (USA) and UIPM Coaches Committee Member Genadijus Sokolovas (USA). UIPM Technical Delegate Ana Ruth Orellana (GUA) served as translator when needed.
“I am delighted to have had the opportunity to sit down with our athletes and coaches to offer updates and answer any questions regarding the future of our sport, including the ongoing New Pentathlon Discipline Test Events and the process that has been followed to date. The meeting lasted one hour and was very well received and informative,” said Rob Stull.
“We had a successful regional championships with some superb performances across the women’s, men’s and relay competitions. I was very pleased that we could welcome South American athletes here to our championships to offer them the opportunity for some elite competition in a great, collegial environment.”
Senior pentathletes from across the Americas will be reunited soon with the 2022 South & Pan-American Junior/Senior Championships taking place in mid-October.
The competition, which takes place in Resende (BRA) starting on October 17, will serve as a qualifier for the 2023 Pan American Games in Santiago (CHI), which will in turn be a qualifier for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.