Three of Four U.S Men Advance to Saturday's Final of World Cup #2 in Mexico City, Mexico-Women Compete on Sunday, March 9
For Immediate Release March 6, 2008 Three of Four U.S Men Advance to Saturday's Final of World Cup #2 in Mexico City, Mexico-Women Compete on Sunday, March 9 COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.-Three of the four U.S. men competing today in the semifinal round of the second World Cup of the 2008 modern pentathlon season performed well enough to advance to Saturday's final. Dennis Bowsher (Dallas, Texas/Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) led the way with a seventh place finish in Group B. Sam Sacksen (Somerset, Pa./Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Eli Bremer (Monument, Colo./Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Air Force) also both qualified for Saturday's final finishing 10th and 13th in Group A respectively. Niul Manske (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) just missed qualifying for the final, finishing 22nd in Group B. Due to a lack of female participants, the women's semifinal, originally scheduled for tomorrow, March 7, will not be held and all women entered will compete in the final on Sunday, March 9. The top eight pentathletes from the United States of America are competing in this second World Cup stop of the 2008 Modern Pentathlon season, March 6-9, in Mexico City, Mexico with the goal of earning valuable ranking points in hopes of qualifying for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China. The remaining four World Cup stops during the Olympic qualification period will be critical to determining the athletes that will make up the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team for Modern Pentathlon. The 2008 World Modern Pentathlon Championships, May 27-31 in Budapest, Hungary, will serve as a direct Olympic qualifier for the top three finishers who have not already qualified their spot for the Olympic Games. The final and most likely way for the U.S. to qualify for a final Olympic slot will be through the Modern Pentathlon World Rankings for the Olympic qualification period of June 1, 2007-June 1, 2008. This final means of qualification will go to the top seven ranked athletes that have not already qualified by some other means. Each country can only qualify a maximum of two men and two women. If the U.S. has more than two men or two women that meet the qualification criteria, USA Pentathlon will determine the two Olympic representatives based on the two highest ranked U.S. athletes in the World Cup standings. This is the first World Cup event of the season for the top two ranked U.S. men. Eli Bremer (Monument, Colo./Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Air Force) and Dennis Bowsher (Dallas, Texas/Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) both sit out the first World Cup stop in Cairo, Egypt, deciding to focus their energies on preparing for this World Cup stop in Mexico City. Bremer has already qualified his spot for the 2008 Olympic Games based on his gold medal performance at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Bowsher, the top ranked U.S. man, is in line to qualify through the World Ranking system, but must keep himself in that position. On the women's side, the top four U.S. women will all compete. Michelle "Mickey"Kelly (Chatham, N.Y./Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) has already qualified a spot for the 2008 Olympic Games by virtue of her performance at the 2007 Pan American Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and will look to use the World Cup season to keep her ahead in the pack. Sheila Taormina (Livonia, Mich.), Emily Shertzer (Hershey, Pa./Colorado Springs, Colo.) and Margaux Isaksen (Fayetteville, Ark./Colorado Springs, Colo.) will be joining Kelly. Taormina, the top ranked U.S. pentathlete, is attempting to make history by qualifying for her fourth U.S. Olympic Team in an unprecedented third sport. She has already competed in the Olympic Games in the sports of swimming and triathlon. She won a gold medal in swimming at the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, Ga., swimming the third leg of the 800m freestyle relay. She finished sixth and 23rd, respectively, in the triathlon at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia and the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. Taormina's top modern pentathlon World Cup performance came in March 2007 when she won the silver medal at World Cup #2 in Cairo, Egypt. The first World Cup stop of the 2008 season was also in Cairo, Egypt and Taormina got the season off to a positive start, leading all Americans with an eighth place finish. Like Sacksen, Isaksen enters World Cup #2 fresh off the best performance of her modern pentathlon career. Isaksen qualified for her first World Cup Final two weeks ago in Cairo, Egypt and finished 13th overall gathering valuable ranking points. The USA Pentathlon Team is coached by Janusz Peciak (Colorado Springs, Colo.). Please see below for the U.S. results from today's men's semifinal competition: 2008 World Cup #2-Mexico City, Mexico Individual event scores for Team USA are listed below: Men's Semifinal Group A Sam Sacksen-10th Place-3,936 points Shoot-175 (1,036 points) Fence-16V and 13D (832 points) Swim-2:12.85 (1,208 points) Run-10:45.77 (820 points) Eli Bremer-13th Place-3,908 points Shoot-174 (1,024 points) Fence-16V and 13D (832 points) Swim-2:08.26 (1,264 points) Run-11:03.13 (748 points) Group B Dennis Bowsher-Seventh Place-3,928 points Shoot-184 (1,144 points) Fence-17V and 13D (888 points) Swim-2:09.34 (1,248 points) Run-11:28.32 (648 points) Niul Manske-22nd Place-3,692 points Shoot-172 (1,000 points) Fence-17V and 13D (888 points) Swim-2:15.75 (1,172 points) Run-11:32.70 (632 points) Representing the United States of America in World Cup #2 in Mexico City, Mexico are: Women: Margaux Isaksen (Fayetteville, Ark./Colorado Springs, Colo.) Michelle "Mickey"Kelly (Chatham, N.Y./Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) Emily Shertzer (Hershey, Pa./Colorado Springs, Colo.) Sheila Taormina (Livonia, Mich.) Men: Dennis Bowsher (Dallas, Texas/Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) Eli Bremer (Monument, Colo./Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Air Force) Niul Manske (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) Sam Sacksen (Somerset, Pa./Colorado Springs, Colo.) Head Coach: Janusz Peciak (Colorado Springs, Colo.) Riding Coach: Michael Cintas (Rancho Mirage, Calif.) Assistant Coach: Scott Christie (Colorado Springs, Colo./U.S. Army) Team Leader: Scott Novack (Colorado Springs, Colo.) For more information, please contact Cecil Bleiker, United States Olympic Committee NGB Services Manager at 719-866-4608. This press release is also available on the USOC's media specific website at www.usocpressbox.org.