Anastasiya Prokopenko – the European champion in the individual event!
Anastasiya Prokopenko became the new European Modern Pentathlon Champion in the Women’s Individual Final. The fate of medals in the individual and team events was determined on Saturday, on the 22sd of July, on the arena of NOTC of ES and HB in Ratomka.
Belarus won back 50 seconds of lag at the start of laser-run and rose to the first position from the 10th one.
Three of our compatriots: Anastasiya Prokopenko, Volha Silkina and bronze medalist of the Women’s Relay Tatsiana Khaldoba were qialified for the Individual Final competition. The Olympic Champion of London, Lithuanian athlete Laura Asadauskaite couldn’t take part into the final competition вecause of her illness. She was replaced in the final by Zinayida Batrak from the Ukraine.
As well as two days before, the Belarusians haven’t coped well with the first type of the program – swimming. As a result of the swim the best of our team was VolhaOlga Silkina (2:17, 97 and the 14th position). Anastasiya Prokopenko and Tatsiana Khaldoba stopped at the third and fourth scores. And the best swimmer among pentathletes was Gulnaz Gubaydullina from Russia, who overcame 200 meters for 2: 07,94.
For fencing competitions the Belarusians gathered the forces and corrected the situation. Olga Silkina and Anastasiya Prokopenko were among the best in the discipline, having won 25 and 23 victories, respectively. Thanks to this success, they seriously rose in the table – Silkina – to second place, Prokopenko – to the ninth. The greatest number of points in fencing was scored by the French athlete Elodie Couvel, who headed the interim table with a good break-away from competitors.
The bonus-round didn’t change the situation for the Belarusian. + 1 extra point got only Tatsiana Khaldoba. But the real furor was made by Italian athlete Gloria Tocchi, having won 7 victories in a row.
The most successful type for Belarusians during the past days – riding – this time the girls failed. Only Anastasiya Prokopenko managed to get out in one minute twelve seconds, but scored 21 penalty points for knocked down obstacles. Tatsiana Khaldoba lost twenty-eight points, and Olga Silkina lost eighteen points. However, the collected points were enough to keep in the number of leaders.
To the final race, the best of the Belarusians came third, having a second of advantage over Hungarian athlete Sarolta Kovacs and giving 12 seconds to the representative of Lithuania, Ieva Serapinaite. Anastasiya Prokopenko took the tenth position with fifty seconds of lagging behind the leader.
The first at the laser-run range was Elodie Couvel, but she failed with the last type. The French athlete remained the leader only until the end of the first third of the race, and then dropped out of the triple. The same was with Ieve Serapinaite and Belarusian athlete Olga Silkina. But an impressive performance was made by Anastasiya Prokopenko, who bypassed Sarolta Kovacs. The last shooting was successful for the Belarusian, thanks to which Anastasiya coped with the task. The new European champion finished the distance with the Belarusian flag in her hands.
The correspondent of pentathlon.by spoke with the new European champion about the victory, expectations and plans for the future:
A.P.: Now I have a full set of awards, there were silver and bronze from European championships, now there is gold. At first there were “waves”: a decline in swimming, a rising in fencing, and then someone seemed to switch me and everything went smoothly. Many people help me, and thanks them for that.
Why did you fail riding today?
A.P.: The horses are getting tired. They passed two relays in two stages. I saw that Pasjans doesn’t raise his legs, wants to go slower. He is 18 years old, he passed the Olympic Games, and it was already hard for him to work, even in the heat. And if I didn’t risk, I would lose, so either so, or so. Maybe this was what I needed to stimulate myself for good shooting.
What special feelings does victory give at the home championship?
A.P.: A special feeling is that I was finally able to summon my strenghts. I managed to keep everything inside and pass in one breath. After the birth of the daughter it was hard to recover, this is the first year when I do something easier than usual.
The team performed well, Olga Silkina was for a long time in the top-3. Did you expect such a result?
A.P.: From Olga, I was waiting for this, she had only to work on the technique of running, and everything will be fine. It’s better when the press comes from behind, and you try to keep the mark. And if you are relaxed and confident that you are the best, it will not lead to anything good. If there is no rear behind, there will be no results.
At what moment at the distance you realized that gold is in your pocket?
A.P.: Right on the first racecourse, when I shot well. Five minutes before the start, something clicked in my head, and I began to shoot differently: I see both the target and the foresight, and where I shoot. When I passed the first shooting and run five hundred meters, I saw that I won back so much … I was shocked!
What are your plans for the World Cup in Cairo?
A.P.: The same, you just have to keep yourself in hands and systematically train, do not break down and do not get sick, otherwise it will be harder. It’s a pity Laura (note: Laura Asadauskaite), she fell ill and did not come today. She has a fever. We are friends with her and constantly compete together, we stimulate each other for better results. A big hello to her and speedy recovery.
For Anastasiya Prokopenko, the gold won was the first medal of the highest standard on the continental championships. Also, the winners of the tournament in Minsk in the individual event among the women were Sarolta Kovacs from Hungary and Turkish athlete Ilke Ozyuksel.
As a result of the competitions, the winners in the women’s team event were determined. The Belarusian triple – Anastasiya Prokopenko, Olga Silkina and Tatsiana Khaldoba – won bronze medals. Gold went to the Italian team, silver – to the Hungarians.
Minsk (the Republic of Belarus)
Final (women, individual)
1.Anastasiya Prokopenko (the Republic of Belarus) – 1350. 2. Sarolta Kovacs (Hungary) – 1336. 3. Ilke Ozyuksel (Turkey) – 1333 … 10. Olga Silkina (the Republic of Belarus) – 1296 … 27. Tatsiana Khaldoba (the Republic of Belarus) – 1245 .
Team event (women)
2.Italy (Irene Prampolini, Alice Sotero, Gloria Tocchi) – 3963. 2. Hungary (Sarolta Kovacs, Zsofia Foldhazi, Tamara Alekszejev) – 3909. 3. The Republic of Belarus (Anastasiya Prokopenko, Olga Silkina, Tatsiana Khaldoba) – 3891.
Detailed results of the tournament table of the women’s individual and team event.