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UIPM 2019 Youth World Championships (U19 & U17): Japan strike gold in Women’s Relay


As the one-year milestone to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games approaches this week, host nation Japan had a victory to cheer as sisters Natsu and Kaede Ohta struck gold at the UIPM 2019 Youth World Championships (U19 & U17).

The young duo defeated rivals – most of them older – from 14 countries in the U17 Women’s Relay to stand on top of the podium.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will be showcased on Wednesday, July 24 with a variety of #1YearToGo celebrations and the Japanese delegation will go home happy with their development progress after the Ohtas won a rare medal at global level in UIPM Sports.

Poland picked up the silver medal thanks to Paulina Myrda and Nela Szczur, while bronze went to Germany duo Rosalie Hanel and Lola Buss.

Qualification for the U19 men’s final also took place on day five of the combined age-group competition.



Japan (Ohta/Ohta) recorded the third-best time in the Swimming pool, with 02:10.48 putting them within touching distance of Poland (Myrda/Szczur) in 2:09.07 and the pace-setting duo from Great Britain, Larissa Hannam and Gina Speakman (2:07.74).

That determined the starting positions in the Laser Run, but it was too close to call throughout. Japan (Ohta/Ohta) ultimately won by 6sec thanks to a top time of 12:10.40.

Poland (Myrda/Szczur) completed the course in 12:18.90 to finish 4sec ahead of Germany (Hanel/Buss), who timed 12:18.00.

Egypt continued an impressive week of results as Nouran Beheiry and Malak Ismail finished 4th, 2sec behind the bronze medallists.

Russia (Kristina Budeikina & Polina Gumeniuk) came home in 5th position and Hungary (Zsofia Urogi & Kinga Dulai) completed the top six.

For full results click here.



Eighty-five athletes took part in qualification for the U19 Men’s Individual Final, with Giorgio Micheli of Italy achieving the best performance (1,115 points) followed by Sergio Flores of Mexico (1,110) and Adham Fouda of Egypt (1,107).

The 36 successful qualifiers for the final on Wednesday, July 24 are listed here.



Viacheslav Malishev, UIPM Executive Board Member for Development, said: “Today was another wonderful day at the UIPM 2019 Youth World Championships and it was great to see Japan win a gold medal in the U17 Women’s Relay.

“With one year to go until the Olympic Games in Tokyo, this demonstrates the benefit of an Olympic Games host nation focusing not only on the senior elite athletes who will take part in the Games but also developing talent for the future.

“I congratulate the successful athletes and coaches and everybody else who has worked to make this competition a success. With two days to go we are all very excited to see who will become the individual and team medalists in the U19 men’s and women’s final.



The UIPM 2019 Youth World Championships (U19 & U17) in Sofia (BUL) runs from July 18-24 and continues on Tuesday, July 21 with the U19 Women’s Final and the U17 Men’s Relay.

Visit the UIPM website or download “UIPM Central” from your app store to keep track of live results throughout the championships.

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