France Records Win In Women’s Epee At World Championships
France won the Women’s Epee team competition, crushing the home town Russian team 45-37 in the gold medal bout. Germany earned bronze with a 42-40 win over Estonia. In epee, fencers attempt to earn points by hitting their opponent’s 1/24th of a second before they get hit. The event simulates a duel to first blood and is the only fencing discipline in which both fencers can score a point on the same action.
The U.S. women’s epee team defeated South Africa 45-17 in their first match up, in the round of 32. They lost their next match 45-26 to Hungary. In placement rounds, the U.S. women earned great experience by defeated their remaining opponents: Korea 45-32, Switzerland 45-34, and Romania by the heart-stopping score of 28-27.
The US Women’s team was made up of Lacey Burt (22, Beaverton, Ore.), Courtney Hurley (17, San Antonio, Texas), Kelley Hurley (19, San Antonio, Texas) and Maya Lawrence (27, Teaneck, N.J.). They ended up placing 9th for the team event.
France came in as the #2 seed and dispatched Poland in the quarterfinals with a crushing 45-29 win. They followed up with a 28-24 win over Estonia before triumphing over host nation Russia 45-37.
Germany defeated Estonia 42-40 to claim the bronze medal.
#1 seed China lost in the quarterfinals to Russia 30-19.
The Women’s Epee team event was pretty much for bragging rights, as there will not be a Women’s Epee Team competition at the 2008 Olympics. The team events provide extra practice for the women’s squads as they compete for individual berths to the Games.
The win by France is a follow-up to their overall team success in the 2006 World Championships as France took 4 of the 6 team gold medals available. France also boasts several of the world’s top epee fencers.
The 2007 World Championships were held in St. Petersburg, Russia. Additional coverage of the events is available at Fencing.net and video coverage is appearing at YouTube and WCSN for viewing and download.