ROME, ITALY. Seventeen year old Margaux Isaksen completed her 2009 World Cup tour with a third consecutive top ten finish as she achieved fourth position in the final stop on the circuit in Rome. She will definitely receive an invitation to the 2009 World Cup Final, to be held September 12-13 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The top thirty-six placing athletes in the four World Cups this year will be invited. Isaksen's three top ten finishes put her at number seven in the World Cup point standings.
Isaksen showed her resilience and mental toughness in the semi-final competition which was held on May 22 by recovering from a devastating fencing performance. Instead of being crushed by perhaps her lowest score of her career, Isaksen rallied by not only having strong performances in her swimming and combined (run/shoot) event, but she won them both! These sterling performances allowed her to qualify for the finals competition which was held in the blistering heat of Rome on Sunday, May 24. The results of qualification group B can be viewed by clicking HERE.
The finals fencing competition went much better after an evening of strategizing with head coach Janusz Peciak. Isaksen won 18 of 35 touches for a score of 832. Her sixth place finish in the 200 meter swim moved her up to tenth position going into the ride. The riding score of 1160 (only two rails down) maintained her position as tenth going into the final combined event. A successful first series of shooting and a swift 1000 meter run moved Isaksen into fourth position coming into the shooting range for the second series. However, she struggled with her second series of shooting and left for the run in ninth position. But once again a strong run and this time a very quick transition in the shooting phase had her leaving for her final 1000 meter run in fourth position which she maintained until the finish just fourteen seconds behind bronze medal winner Evdokia Gretchnikova. The complete details including the Results Page and UIPM competition press releases may be viewed at the Rome World Cup Events Page. Additional details about the competition may be viewed at the UIPM website.
Isaksen will return to the US and aim for the US National and NORCECA Championships which will be held June 5-7 in Rancho Mirage, CA. A trip to the Junior World Championships in Kaoshiung, Taipei from July 5-12 and the Senior World Championships in London, England August 11-19 will complete the summer competitions.