Sil­ver for Jess at the Bri­tish Cham­pi­onships

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Etbusiness Daily -

LO­CAL Olympic hopeful Jess Var­ley took the sil­ver medal at the Bri­tish Tetrathlon Cham­pi­onships at Soli­hull.

The 17 year-old Oun­dle School pupil, who has been fast-tracked as a fu­ture Bri­tish Olympian in the mod­ern pen­tathlon af­ter be­ing hand-picked to join the Lloyds TSB Lo­cal He­roes ini­tia­tive, im­proved the longer the event went on.

The event be­gan with a 200m swim and a ‘one hit’ fenc­ing com­pe­ti­tion with com­peti­tors then seeded based on points they picked up in those two dis­ci­plines.

They then went into the com­bined event of run­ning and shoot­ing.

Var­ley com­pleted the swim in 2.22, the fifth quick­est time, and then achieved 12 wins and 11 de­feats in the fenc­ing, again the fifth best.

These re­sults saw her seeded sixth over­all and she started the 3000m com­bined run/shoot 51 sec­onds be­hind first place and 40 sec­onds adrift of sec­ond.

Com­peti­tors started at their al­lo­cated time and ran into the shoot­ing range where they shot five tar­gets down. They then ran 1000m, shot again, ran 1000m, shot again and then ran the final 1000m.

Var­ley was fourth af­ter the first run, third af­ter the sec­ond but then moved up to sec­ond, hav­ing made up 40 sec­onds.

She said: “My fenc­ing re­sult was par­tic­u­larly pleas­ing as it was a great im­prove­ment on pre­vi­ous com­pe­ti­tions where it has not been my strong­est dis­ci­pline and I have lost valu­able points.

“Un­doubt­edly the coach­ing Chris Howser has been giv­ing me is start­ing to pay div­i­dends.

“It was a very ex­cit­ing com­pe­ti­tion and has given me con­fi­dence for the forth­com­ing Great Bri­tain team tri­als.”

Var­ley is a mem­ber of Peter­bor­ough Ath­letic Club, Burgh­ley Pony Club, Oun­dle, Peter­bor­ough and Stam­ford Fenc­ing Club (re­cently set up by Howser) and Oun­dle and Dis­trict Swim­ming Club.

In March she fin­ished sixth in the Public Schools Fenc­ing Cham­pi­onships at Crys­tal Palace, a con­sid­er­able im­prove­ment on her 19th po­si­tion last year.

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