Murray claims British title again

Sam Murray
Sam Murray

Samantha Murray has been crowned British Modern Pentathlon champion for a third time after an impressive showing at Bath University.

The Clitheroe athlete led from start to finish in a dominant performance to win from Gravesend’s Kate French and Dumfries’ Jo Muir.

The day began with London 2012 silver medallist and 2015 world champion Murray producing a season’s best time of 2:11.74 – a week after recording a seasonal best in Poland at World Cup 4 – to take an early lead ahead of Buckinghamshire’s Sarah Collin and Yorkshire’s Georgia Pipes.

The 27-year-old also headed the field in the fencing salle, picking up 29 victories and just five defeats.

French picked up 27 victories with Dorking’s Francesca Summers and Bristol’s Charlie Follett both securing 24 victories.

The ride at Hill House Farm did little to change the order. However, a perfect clear round by Pipes moved her up to fourth ahead of the laser run, behind Murray, French and Summers.

With big gaps at the top of the leaderboard going into the final discipline, good running and shooting meant Murray comfortably held on to her lead to become the 2017 Women’s British Modern Pentathlon champion

French had a similarly comfortably final discipline on her way to silver with the real battle behind for the final podium place.

In the end, it was a scintillating laser-run from 22-year-old Muir that propelled her into the bronze medal position, crossing the line five seconds ahead of Summers.

Murray’s win came on the back of news her Rio Olympic performance was upgraded from a ninth-place finish to eighth, after Chinese athlete Chen Qian failed competition doping control.

“I’m delighted with my performance as I had an all-round strong day across all five disciplines. I’ve worked really hard over the past 6-8 weeks,” said Murray, “So it’s nice to see some positive results in the competition.”

The former Ribble Valley Modern Pentathlon Club athlete added: “Being 2017 British Champion is a great honour and I’m really proud of this achievement.

“It’s always great to win a title and it’s really fulfilling to do this in front of my friends and family at my home training ground in Bath.”