Strong performances by a number of novice athletes were the highilights of the weekend in the Modern Pentathlon Cuppers.
As part of a club policy to encourage wider participation, competition rules were altered slightly to allow individuals to contribute to their team score in as few as three disciplines.
The show jumping at Haggis Farm was the opening event and excellent riding from Josie Faulkner (Clare) and Grace Long (Queens’) earned both a maximum score of 1200 points.
The following morning, the shooting competition saw some unexpected results. Ollie Wright (Emmanuel) and Eric Regnier (Churchill), both novices, performed superbly to lead the standings.
At the Wilberforce Road athletics track, an impromtu team relay lead to victory for Edd Moffett (Wolfson), Dan James (St Edmund’s) and new pentathlete Rosemarie Abbott (Jesus).
Abbott stopped to tie her shoelaces halfway around the track – a surreal moment in the day’s competition and one that suggests her times could still improve!
The 200m swim saw further successes for novice participants. David Parker (Queens’), who demonstrated military determination throughout the competition, was joined by Faulkner in posting a swim time far quicker than many of the more seasoned athletes. They were jointly awarded the overall ‘Best Newcomer’ award.
In the fencing, the final event, Long’s performance shone. Her achievement was especially impressive since her previous experience, as a Pony Club tetrathlete, had never led her onto the fencing piste.
But Long’s heroics were not sufficient to secure the trophy for Queens’ as the prestigious overall title went to the St Catharine’s team of Nicky Brooks, Rebecca Riiser, Kirsty Brain and Hannah Darcy.
The strong novice performances bode well for the Cambridge team ahead of their forthcoming Varsity trip to Oxford.