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Health Matters sponsors local schools 'super 8' Biathlon

It is not every day that you have the chance to meet a UK Olympic medalist. For over 90 girls from Bablake Senior and Junior School, Solihull, Holy Trinity Primary (Kidderminster) and Allesley Park Primary, that dream has just come true.

These girls took part in an inaugural Coventry Super 8 Biathlon and the guest of honour was UK Pentathlete, Georgie Harland, who won a bronze medal at the Athens Olympics.

The event, which was hosted overall at Bablake, was organised by Peter Evans, Development Officer for the Modern Pentathlon, and sponsored by Health Matters.

The emphasis of the day was to introduce the girls to shooting and fencing, two events that would be new to most, and then allow the girls to compete in swimming and running.

The whole event took place over almost 7 hours and the girls were as excited at the awards' ceremony as they had been at the start of the day.

The inaugural Super 8 Biathlon competition for schools was launched in Coventry on Friday February 26th. The event marks the start of a new era for Modern Pentathlon in the West Midlands, as the region seeks to develop a UIPM-based league structure for its eight sub-region hubs (Coventry, Birmingham/Wolverhampton, Solihull, Worcestershire, Herefordshire, Warwickshire, Shropshire and Staffordshire).

The girls-only competition for 9-to-13 year olds attracted four schools (over 90 children) from around the region. Bablake and Allesley Primary from Coventry, Holy Trinity (Kidderminster) and Solihull Primary contested the event, which was attended throughout the day by Georgie Harland, the former Olympic Pentathlon Bronze medal winner from Athens 2004.

Sue Hyde, the National Competitions Manager for Pentathlon GB, said: 'What a great experience this was for the young girls involved. Many of them had never competed at this level before however some of the performances were excellent, particularly from City of Coventry swimmers and runners from Coventry Godiva and Coventry Panthers RC.'

Health Matters, Managing Director Simon Hurley-Smith said: 'I'm delighted with the success of the day's activities and thought the athletes were a credit to their respective schools, saying: 'All the girls clearly wanted to do their very best for themselves and for their schools and the competition was tough with some outstanding performances.

To have an opportunity of sponsoring such a sporting event and to encourage youngsters to push themselves and to compete with each other was a real privilege for myself and I was pleased that Health Matters could offer some financial assistance to make the day happen.'



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