Muir and Murray claim Silver on World Champs Day 1
Pentathlon GB’s incredible recent success in the Senior World Championships continued on the first day of the 2016 championships as Joanna Muir and Samantha Murray claimed silver in the Women’s Relay. World Championships debutant Jo and former World Champion Sam combined to form a fantastic team performance in a tightly contested event in Moscow.
The British duo sat in the top 3 throughout the day, eventually crossing the line 2nd behind victors Germany.
Pentathlon GB Performance Director Jan Bartu hailed it as a “Very positive start for the team. And not just for the girls competing, hopefully there will be a positive vibe throughout the whole team, including the men arriving later. We didn’t have great expectations for this relay competition; we just wanted to brush off any anxiety ahead of the individual competition.”
The day started in the pool where Jo and Sam’s time of 2:04.24 was the second quickest, just 2 seconds and 6 points behind home favourites Russia. 17 victories and 19 defeats in the fencing ranking round saw them slip to third overall, but still very much in contention with just 15 points separating 2nd placed Italy and 6th placed Belarus. Defeats of Mexico and Germany in the bonus round meant the Brits picked up two extra points to finish the morning strongly.
A perfect round in the ride saw the duo pick up the maximum 300 points, moving them back up to second position ahead of the combined event, 32 seconds behind Russia but just 8 seconds ahead of Italy in 5th. Jo took the first leg of the combined event, slipping behind Germany’s Annika Schleu, but gaining significant time on the Russians, reducing the deficit to the leaders to just 12 seconds at the changeover. Sam then continued her teammate’s good work, overhauling Russia to move into the silver medal position.
2015 World Champion Lena Schoneborn went on to secure victory for Germany with Belarus claiming bronze after producing the quickest combined event of the day. Jan admitted that “The German team are superior at this stage so to be 2nd behind them is a good result for us.”
The GB Performance Director also had special praise for the “top class” facilities and organisation in Moscow.
Jo and Sam will be competing again on Thursday alongside teammates Kate French and Freyja Prentice in the Women’s Individual Qualification.
Tomorrow will see the Men’s Relay taking place with Joe Evans and Tom Toolis representing Great Britain.