Joe and Henry Choong: Brothers concentrating on 2024 Olympics fashionable pentathlon spots

After Joe Choong received fashionable pentathlon gold on the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 one factor that stored him formidable within the sport was the prospect of competing at one other Video games alongside his youthful brother Henry.

The Choong brothers, who practice collectively in Bathtub, each wish to qualify for Paris 2024.

Defending champion Joe, 28, is hoping to safe his spot this week on the European Video games in Krakow, with 26-year-old Henry hoping to clinch Nice Britain’s second spot over the subsequent 12 months.

“Competing on the Olympics alongside Henry could be up there with my Tokyo achievement,” Joe instructed BBC Factors West.

Henry added: “[It would be] actually particular. I do know that for Joe, after profitable in Tokyo, competing with me was one of many issues that made him determine to go on for an additional three years.”

Like most siblings, the Choong brothers have at all times been aggressive – particularly with one another – and each acquired into fashionable pentathlon by way of swimming at youth degree.

However whereas Joe selected to go to the College of Bathtub in 2013 to mix finding out with coaching – the college is the nationwide base for contemporary pentathlon GB – Henry went to Cambridge College, successfully “semi-retiring” from the game.

Modern pentathlon Olympic gold medallist Joe Choong in Tokyo
Joe Choong grew to become the primary British man to win Olympic gold within the fashionable pentathlon

“The entire time at Cambridge I wasn’t considering ‘after this I’ll come again to Bathtub and provides pentathlon one other go’. I used to be form of considering I would go to London, get a monetary job, make some cash,” stated Henry.

“However then it was in my second to final 12 months Joe had his finest 12 months of his profession the place he acquired so many medals.

“I believe he received the World Cup ultimate and I went to the World Championships to observe him and it simply appeared a lot enjoyable – the approach to life, travelling, competing. I assumed ‘this seems enjoyable, possibly I ought to try to give it one other go’.”

The brothers now dwell nearly subsequent door to one another in Bathtub and put their sibling bond – and rivalry – to good use in coaching.

“It is simply good, clearly at college you do your personal issues, develop aside slightly bit however we got here again collectively, began coaching collectively and we have nonetheless acquired the identical pursuits. It is good to have somebody to talk to about all the pieces,” Joe stated.

Finishing the Olympic, World and European set

In addition to being the reigning Olympic champion, Joe can be the trendy pentathlon world champion, having received his maiden title in July final 12 months.

He travels to Poland hoping to be topped European champion and “full the set” of holding all three titles on the similar time.

A end within the high eight of the competitors may also assure his place within the Paris Olympics.

“I’ve acquired all of the titles aside from the Europeans in the mean time and I do not know what number of pentathletes can say that they’ve executed that ever,” stated Joe. “It is a very massive private ambition of mine.

“Given my historical past and my performances over the past couple of years, I believe I am in a spot the place I can say if I do not safe that top-eight end it is gone fairly disastrously fallacious.

“For me, the objective is to win however one thing isn’t fairly proper if I do not safe a high eight minimal.”

Henry, who’s ranked 98th on this planet, isn’t among the many GB staff travelling to the European Video games.

As a substitute, he’s hoping to compete in at the very least two of the World Cup occasions subsequent 12 months to spice up his rating and qualify – the six highest-ranked athletes who haven’t certified by way of different accredited occasions will win an Olympic place.

“This 12 months did not fairly go how I used to be anticipating or to plan so I am not going to be going to the European Video games or getting an Olympic qualifying spot however there’s nonetheless subsequent 12 months,” stated Henry.

“Hopefully I can kick on subsequent 12 months and do a bit higher and hopefully get the second spot together with Joe.”