January 16 - The University of Bath will host the 2015 Modern Pentathlon European Championships, which will see more than 100 athletes competing in the first international event in the sport since London 2012, it was announced today.
The Championships, due to take place from August 17 to 23, form part of the UK Sport Gold Event Series and will represent the first opportunity for European pentathletes to achieve the qualifying standard for Rio 2016.
Bath is home to Pentahlon GB's national training centre and the University's director of sport, Stephen Baddeley, is excited to be hosting the Championships.
"The University of Bath is proud to be chosen to host the 2015 Modern Pentathlon European Championships," he said.
"We have a terrific track record of hosting major sporting events, training camps and teams.
"The world-leading sports facilities at the Sports Training Village, along with both accommodation and catering on campus is a winning combination.
"All this in the city of Bath, a World Heritage Site that combines some of the nation's finest heritage with a vibrant city centre."
University of Bath graduate Samantha Murray, who retained the women's team gold title at the World Championships in Chinese Taipei back in August along with team mates Mhairi Spence and Kate French, hopes to be one of the athletes competing in 2015 and hopes home advantage will help her clinch a spot at Rio 2016.
"It will be a fabulous occasion for British athletes to compete on home soil in front of friends, families and supporters.
"That's always an advantage.
"The Sports Training Village at the University of Bath is a world-class facility and I'm sure it will deliver an outstanding modern pentathlon competition for Europe's best pentathletes."
Murray, Spence and French will be defending their European team gold in Bath from last year's Championships in Drzonkow, where Murray and French also claimed relay gold along with Katy Burke.
The 2015 European Championships will be the second time the event has been held in the UK following on from Medway Park, Kent, in 2011.
"The 2015 European Championships will be the first qualification for the Olympic Games in Rio and we're sure athletes, coaches and officials are looking forward to having it in Great Britain," said Tatiana Ardabyeva., secretary general of the European Confederation of Modern Pentathlon (ECMP).
"The 2011 Championships were in Medway and we still remember it as one of the best European events.
"We know there is a very professional group of organisers in the UK and we're looking forward to working with them again."
With only two men's and women's places available for each nation at Rio 2016, the competition in Bath looks set to be of the highest quality as athletes will be looking to put down an early marker for Olympic qualification.
"Because of the way Olympic qualification works, the European Championships the year before an Olympic Games traditionally provide the earliest and best opportunity for Britain's pentathletes to try to achieve the Olympic qualifying standard," said Pentathlon GB chief executive officer Jon Austin.
"Our athletes will have the opportunity to do that with British supporters cheering them on, and that's got to be good news."
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August 2013: British women take team crown while its double gold for Lithuania at modern pentathlon World Championships
July 2013: Pentathlon GB and University of Bath to further extend their strong relationship
December 2012: Murray named Britain's Olympic modern pentathlete of the year
August 2012: Britain's 65th and final medal of London 2012 won by modern pentathlon's Murray