Great Britain opened their campaign at the 2012 Modern Pentathlon World Championships by taking bronze in the women’s team relay.
The trio of Katy Burke, Kate French and Katy Livingston, who train at the Pentathlon GB High Performance Centre at the University of Bath, came home in third place behind Germany and China at the championships in Rome today (Monday).
With 12 teams contesting the women’s team relay on the opening day of the championships, the British trio were eighth after the fencing and climbed to fifth after the swimming.
With the third best riding performance of the day, the British trio went into the run/shoot in fourth place behind leaders Korea, with reigning champions Hungary second and Germany third.
Burke handed over to French in third place after two shoots and runs, and Britainwere still third when French passed on to Livingston. Livingston dropped out of the top-three in her opening shoot, but produced a strong final run to secure Britain’s first medal of the championships.
China climbed from seventh to lead the field at the end of the final round of shooting, but Olympic champion Lena Schoneborn overhauled 2009 individual world champion Qian Chen on the final run to ensure Germany took gold.
Great Britain just missed out on the medals in the women’s team relay at last year’s World Championships in Moscow, finishing fifth.
The next Brits in action at the World Championships compete on Thursday when Heather Fell,Samantha Murray, Freyja Prentice and Mhairi Spence contest the women’ssemi-finals aiming for places in the women’s final on Saturday.
Burke, French and Livingston are all University of Bath graduates.
The individual competitions are the highlight of the World Championships as the championships are the final qualification event for the London 2012 Olympic Games. British athletes must medal in the individual competitions to achieve the qualifying standard.
Thereafter the only other opportunity to qualify for the Games is through the Olympic ranking list. So far Britain’s Jamie Cooke and Freyja Prentice have achieved the London 2012 qualifying standard, but with a maximum of two places per gender per nation available, neither are guaranteed places on the team.
The team relays have no impact on Olympic qualification.