UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Albena: Choong (GBR) and Jun (KOR) return to spice up season
- Olympic champion and bronze medallist set for first taste of new format
- Clouvel (FRA) and Ozyuksel (TUR) top billing in women’s event
- Race to qualify for Pentathlon World Cup Final hots up in Bulgaria
The return of the reigning Olympic champion and bronze medallist promises to add spice to the action at UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Albena this week.
Tokyo 2020 gold medallist Joseph Choong of Great Britain makes his comeback after missing the opening two competitions of the season, getting his first taste of the new Modern Pentathlon format alongside younger brother Henry Choong (GBR).
A high-quality Korea team also makes its first appearance in 2022, which means a return for Tokyo 2020 bronze medallist Woongtae Jun (KOR) and the team-mate who finished one place behind him at last year’s rescheduled Games, Jinhwa Jung (KOR).
The competition in Bulgaria will be the third to feature the new, TV-friendly format designed for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. All five disciplines are contested in a 90-minute blitz of action and a new champion is crowned inside two hours.
With only two opportunities remaining for athletes to earn qualification points for the UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Final, the action began today with two days of qualification determining the line-up for the new-look Semi-finals on May 12/13.
Only 36 athletes (18 female, 18 male) will return for the Finals on May 14 before the competition concludes with the Mixed Relay on May 15.
Ones to watch
The men’s competition promises to be truly gripping with the return of Choong (GBR), Jun and Jung (KOR) presenting a new challenge to those who shone in Pentathlon World Cup Cairo and Pentathlon World Cup Budapest in March and April.
Look out for early-season gold medallists Martin Vlach of Czech Republic and Christopher Patte of France, who is named beside two-time world champion Valentin Belaud (FRA) on a formidable entry list.
Others who might feature strongly are Germany brothers Patrick and Marvin Dogue and team-mate Fabian Liebig, ranked 5th in the world. Hungary started the season strongly and earned two medals in Cairo (EGY) thanks to Csaba Bohm and Balazs Szep.
In the absence of form athletes Michelle Gulyas (HUN) and Elena Micheli of Italy, who traded gold and silver in the opening two competitions of the season, Rio 2016 Olympic silver medallist Elodie Clouvel (FRA) returns to further her quest for glory on home soil at Paris 2024.
The world No.3 will encounter threats from within a posse of athletes ranked in the world’s top 20, including Mexico duo Mayan Oliver and Mariana Arceo, Rebecca Langrehr of Germany, Ieva Serapinaite of Lithuania, Blanka Guzi of Hungary and Laser Run specialist Ilke Ozyuksel of Turkey.
Ozyuksel (TUR) finished 5th at Tokyo 2020 with Clouvel (FRA) one place further back. Kim Sehee and Kim Sunwoo (KOR) will also be aiming to get to grips with the new format and keep the next generation of athletes at bay.
Visit the UIPM website to see the latest world rankings for women and men.
UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann said: “Bulgaria is an important pillar of our movement and I am very pleased to see Category A competitions returning to Albena for the duration of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games cycle.
“This cycle features a new, more dynamic Modern Pentathlon format and I’m sure it will be a thrilling experience for the spectators, VIP guests and media attending UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Albena – not to mention viewers watching from around the world via UIPM TV.
“My gratitude goes to the Bulgarian Modern Pentathlon Federation and all volunteers, sponsors and supporters. Special thanks also to the city and national government and the National Olympic Committee of Bulgaria for supporting our sport.”
Watch and follow
With Semi-finals now part of the competition streaming service, live coverage of UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Albena is available to subscribers on UIPM.TV where annual packages cost €14.99.
Follow World Pentathlon on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram throughout the Pentathlon World Cup for additional content, and visit the UIPM website or download the ‘UIPM Central’ app to keep track of results.
UIPM 2022 Pentathlon World Cup Albena
Times denote start of UIPM.TV live coverage (CEST)
May 10: Women’s Qualification
May 11: Men’s Qualification | Women’s Fencing Ranking Round
May 12: Women’s Semi-final A (9.55am) | Women’s Semi-final B (2.25pm) | Men’s Fencing Ranking Round
May 13: Men’s Semi-final A (9.55am) | Men’s Semi-final B (3.25pm)
May 14: Women’s Final (9.15am) | Men’s Final (1.15pm)
May 15: Mixed Relay (11.55am)