Live blog: 2019 Modern Pentathlon European Championships day five – men’s final

10 August 2019

The first medals will be handed out and eight Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualification places will be secured when the 2019 Modern Pentathlon European Championships men’s final takes place at the University of Bath Sports Training Village on Saturday.

Ticket-holders are advised that, with high winds forecast, we have had to reschedule the riding and laser-run events to 5pm and 7.15pm respectively due to safety reason. Keep in touch via this live blog and our social media channels for further information.

Our come and try it sessions have moved indoors to the tennis court area, so there will still be plenty to do between events and to test your skills in a mini pentathlon.

8.45am – SWIMMING: It’s a flying start to the men’s final for Pentathlon GB duo Jamie Cooke and Joe Choong as they set the two fastest times in the London 2012 Legacy Pool, clocking 1:58.27 and 2:00.51 respectively.

Ireland’s Arthur Laningan-O’Keeffe, hoping to replicate the European gold he won in Bath four years ago, also impressed as he touched the wall third in 2:01.49, just ahead of Austrian Gustav Gustenau.

The home fans created a great atmosphere in the pool and British duo Sam Curry and Tom Toolis fed off that to place first and second in heat 4, their respective times of 2:03.89 and 2:04.08 being the seventh and eighth fastest overall.

Arthur Lanigan O’Keeffe thanks the Irish supporters after placing third in the swim

2pm – FENCING: Cooke enjoyed what he described as his “best fence of all time” as he maintained his grip on top spot overall with an excellent 25 victories from his 35 bouts in an action-packed University of Bath sports hall.

His performance was only bettered by Russia’s Alexander Lifanov, whose 27 wins moved him up to second overall, while defending champion Valentin Prades of France surged back into the leading pack with 24 victories.

Choong remained third overall after recording 22 wins, matched by Hungary’s Bence Demeter, and Olympic Champion Aleksander Lesun gained some valuable time with four victories in the bonus round.

6.30pm – RIDING: The ride was delayed for two hours due to high winds and while conditions improved, it proved to be a challenge for the competitors with only Gustenau, Jan Kuf of the Czech Republic and Latvia’s Oleksandrs Pincuks producing a clear round, although all picked up time penalties.

Those performances moved Kuf and Gustenau up to fourth and fifth respectively, while Prades climbed into the top three after picking up just 14 penalty points while Lifanov – who started in second – dropped to ninth after clipping seven rails on a quick horse.

Choong rolled just a couple of fences as he added 283 points to his total, moving him back up to second behind team-mate Cooke who maintained his lead going into the run-shoot after a controlled ride which resulted in just 25 penalty points being conceded.

Olympic Champion Lesun elected not to take part in the ride.

7.45pm: RUN-SHOOT: The sun came out for the run-shoot and a big home crowd saw Cooke cap an excellent day with a fantastic run-shoot. His only wobble came on the second visit to the shooting range but his lead was never less than ten seconds as he came home a clear winner.

Prades, ranked number one in the world, ran strongly to pull away from Choong and secure the silver medal a year after winning gold. The quickest time came from Martin Vlach, who surged through the field to claim a well-earned place on the podium.

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