Izzy (12) fences, swims, runs and shoots her way to a national title success

Isabella Howser (centre) on the podium in Bath.Isabella Howser (centre) on the podium in Bath.
Isabella Howser (centre) on the podium in Bath.
Prince William School, Oundle student Isaballa Howser is a British Tetrathlon champion.

The 12 year-old from Yarwell is a budding pentathlete inspired by the Tokyo Olympic gold medal performances of GB pair Kate French and Joe Choong.

Tetrathlon is basically a pentathlon without the show jumping so contestants compete at fencing, swimming, shooting and running.

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And Isabella, even though she only decided to train as a pentathlete in the summer, won the under 13 event at the Modern Tetrathlon Championships in Bath, a British Championship competition.

Isabella Howser during the swimming discipline at the British Tetrathlon ChampionshipsIsabella Howser during the swimming discipline at the British Tetrathlon Championships
Isabella Howser during the swimming discipline at the British Tetrathlon Championships

Isabella opened with the fence which she trains for at The Peterborough School with the Oundle, Peterborough & Stamford Epee Club.

After a solid start of six wins and four losses, Isabella went on an amazing 12-hit winning streak, to end with 18 wins and four defeats to secure top spot in the discipline.

It was a 100m freestyle swim next for the City of Peterborough Swimming Club (COPs) member and, although she had not actually done a 100m race previously, Isabella managed a time of 1:21 to take third in the discipline and retain the overall lead.

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The modern tetrathlon finishes with a combined shoot/run event, using laser pistols. Points from the previous events transfer to a lead in seconds to create a first past the post finish. Isaballa’s dominant fence and solid swim gave her a 29-second lead going into this final discipline.

Isaballa Howser (left) during the fencing discipline.Isaballa Howser (left) during the fencing discipline.
Isaballa Howser (left) during the fencing discipline.

For the Under 13 event, the laser run has a short run to the five-shot shoot over a 10 metre range, a 400m run, a second shoot and finishes with a second 400m run.

A slightly slow first shoot, taking 11 shots to hit the five targets, considerably cut Isabella’s lead, however a strong first run, helped by training at Corby Athletics club, kept her ahead. Isabella finished with a perfect five hits out of five shots in the second shoot to leave the range with a clear lead going into the second run.

And she maintained her form to finish 14 seconds ahead of Leweston’s Cecilia Huepfl to become British Champion.

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Isabella finished an excellent second overall in the laser/run with her consistency over all four disciplines guaranteeing the gold medal.

It was a superb achievement by Isabella who was the only local athlete in an event dominated by competitors from sporting schools which have specific pentathlon training programmes such as Millfield School & Leweston School, both private schools in the South West.

Isabella is now looking to improve further before she attends the 2022 British Tetrathon Championships, scheduled for April and British Youth Pentathlon in July.

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