Medal winners and rising stars named in Britain’s modern pentathlon squad for Tokyo

  • World number two Kate French heads the four-strong British modern pentathlon squad for the Tokyo Olympics.

    Kate is joined by her fellow Rio 2016 Olympians Joseph Choong and James Cooke, as well as Olympic debutante Joanna Muir.

    Modern pentathlon comprises fencing, swimming and showjumping on borrowed horses, culminating with the laser-run (laser pistol shooting and cross-country running).

    Kate, 30, heads into the Games following her victory in the World Cup final in Hungary in May, where she set a new women’s world record in the fencing. She was also fifth at the 2016 Olympics and won silver at the 2019 European Championships.

    Tokyo will be the first Olympics for Joanna, 26, who is currently ranked sixth in the world and heads the UIPM’s World Cup ranking list.
    James, 30, set a new Olympic modern pentathlon swim record at the 2016 Games. In 2018, he was the first British man in more than 25 years to be crowned modern pentathlon world champion, which he followed up with gold at the 2019 Europeans.

    Joseph, 26, finished 10th on his Olympic debut at Rio and has since held the world champion and world number one titles.

    “This team has put in some incredibly strong performances this season and they are fully deserving of their selection to Team GB for the Tokyo Olympic Games,” said Team GB chef de mission for the Games, Mark England.

    “They, along with so many other Team GB athletes, have demonstrated the determination and commitment required to perform at the highest level despite the challenging circumstances that everyone has faced over the last 13 months.

    “I’d like to congratulate them all on this superb achievement and look forward to welcoming them to Tokyo next month.”

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    Pentathlon GB’s performance director Jan Bartu added: “It has been remarkable return to competition for our British pentathletes this year. Despite the long break from competition, the team have trained well in challenging circumstances and continued to perform well on the international stage.

    “Despite not being able to conclude the Olympic Games qualification season for reasons beyond our control, the athletes still achieved the UIPM Olympic Games qualification standard, confirming the strength and depth of the team and the performance programme at Pentathlon GB, and I want to take the opportunity to congratulate the whole squad and coaches on this achievement.

    “I also want to thank the whole team of staff who have supported the athletes, particularly over the past year and throughout the pandemic.

    “The team selected have proven form and experience and are looking forward to representing Team GB in Tokyo, but we still have more preparation to do at home in Bath, and will continue to focus on doing everything we can to ensure we are as ready as we can be when the Games come around.”

    This is the final year that the modern pentathlon will continue in its current format at the Olympics. A new look for the sport has been developed for Paris 2024, condensing all five phases into a 90 minutes to make it easier for people to follow and broadcast.

    British modern pentathlon squad:


    • Kate French
    • Joanna Muir


    • Joseph Choong
    • James Cooke

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