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UIPM 2023 Laser Run World Championships: Adomaityte (LTU) earns Women’s Individual crown

Laser Run

The UIPM 2023 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships kicked off today with athletes competing across 12 Women’s Individual Laser Run categories.

In mostly overcast conditions in Bath (GBR), 21-year-old Elzbieta Adomaityte of Lithuania claimed the coveted title of senior world champion after comfortably winning gold ahead of silver medallist Devan Wiebe of Canada and Alexandra Bousfield of Great Britain, who claimed bronze.

Adomaityte (LTU), who won bronze at the UIPM 2022 Pentathlon Junior World Championships, proved once again that she is following in the footsteps of two of the best Laser Runners of all time, team-mates Laura Asadauskaite and Gintare Venckauskaite.

The 12 individual golds were split between six countries on the opening day, with Germany claiming four, Egypt three and the host nation taking two. Athletes from Latvia and South Africa also became individual world champions on a day of thrilling racing.

There was an eye-catching victory in the Junior Final for Esther Fernandez Donda (GER), while Mika-Leigh Strydom (RSA) won a remarkable cat-and-mouse U15 duel with Menna Mohamed (EGY). The U13 title did, however, go to Egypt thanks to the remarkable U17 Pentathlon world champion, Farida Khalil (EGY).

The host nation dominated U17 as Evelina Powell (GBR) overtook Imogen Edwards (GBR) for gold on the last of four laps, but they couldn’t match rivals from mainland Europe at U19 level, where Josefine Unterberger (GER) held off the challenge of twin sisters Katharina and Florina Jurt of Switzerland.

There were two gold medals for Germany at Masters level, where fans enjoyed a interesting 40+ battle between reigning champion Andra Novicka (LAT) and Swiss national team coach Florence Dinichert OLY, finally won by Novicka (LAT).

Three days of Laser Run action are bringing athletes of all generations together as they compete for world titles in age grades from Under 9 to Masters 70+, with a Para Laser Run race taking place on the final day. 

With more than 560 athletes representing 33 countries, the eighth instalment of the Laser Run World Championships is a global showcase of UIPM’s most popular development sport.

Champions’ reaction

Senior gold medallist Adomaityte (LTU) said: “I’m in preparation for the Pentathlon World Championships coming on Wednesday, and my coach had the idea to come here and treat it like a training session and just run and focus on my shooting. To have a Semi-final and a Final was really good.

“In the Final, I just put everything together and it feels great to be ready for next week. It’s my second time here and it’s so much fun, I love the weather because it’s refreshing, and the people are so nice and everything is perfect.

“I’d like to thank my coaches and physios, friends and family. It’s not just about me, it’s everybody who helped me to get here.”

Junior champion Fernandez Donda (GER) said: “This was a really important competition for me after nine months out with injury, and it’s second medal this year after winning the Laser Run at the European Championships, so I’m really happy.”

U17 gold medallist Powell (GBR) said: “It was really difficult, my last shoot was definitely my worst, but I felt good and pushed it and managed to overtake and win.

U15 champion Strydom (RSA) said: “It was very hard, I had to try my best and I just want to thank all the people who helped me and told me to push to the last, as I always do. Thank you to all my friends and family and my parents for bringing me here, and my coach.”

“! want to thank the crowd and my parents and grandparents and sister, and Immy my team-mate who came second today, she is always supportive and a great team-mate.”

U11 winner Roaa Abd Elmaksod (EGY) said: “I did my best in the competition and was concentrating on trying to shoot five out of five. I couldn’t do it and then I had to run very fast to catch everyone. Thank you to everyone in Team Egypt for all your support.”

Masters 70+ winner Emily Freund (GER) said: “It was a very fine race and I enjoyed very much. The course was very good. I found my companions here were really supportive and friendly. I like it here.

“You need a lot of discipline, whether you are young or old – you have to train almost every day and do everything your coach tells you. And the only other thing is you have to enjoy the sport.

“There are five disciplines and I only do three or four, but the young ones must continue to train as much as possible.”

Watch and follow

The UIPM 2023 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships can be watched live on UIPM TV, where annual subscriptions cost €14.99. All results are available on the UIPM website and via the UIPM Central app.

Follow World Pentathlon on Facebook, Instagram , TikTok or X (Twitter) for additional content.

The UIPM 2023 Laser Run World Championships runs from August 19-21, based on the following schedule (UIPM TV live coverage times in Central European Summer Time).

  • Sunday, August 20 | Men’s Individual (9.55am)
  • Monday, August 21 | Para Laser Run and Mixed Relays (9.55am)

Upcoming events

Modern Pentathlon