Following the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM) decision to remove Riding from Modern Pentathlon after the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and replace it with a new fifth discipline, Modern Pentathlon Australia (MPA) has received strong feedback from current and former members including several letters to MPA.
These approaches led the MPA Executive to carry out a more structured consultation process with members and the sport’s community, via an online forum and online survey. MPA carried out the consultation in a very short timeframe given the UIPM Congress on 27-28 November.
The online forum was held in the afternoon of Sunday 14 November. There were over 40 participants at the forum including Tokyo 2020 Olympians Marina Carrier and Ed Fernon (also London 2012), Rio 2016 Champion Chloe Esposito, and Olympians from 2004, 2000, 1992, 1988 and 1984 as well as competition managers, parents, coaches and officials.
There were 57 responses to the online survey.
The MPA Executive held six meetings in the course of the week to discuss all feedback and to also consider the broader environment and context of the current issues.
On the evening of Wednesday 17 November the MPA Executive wrote to the UIPM with an Executive Summary of the consultation and the position statement from the MPA Executive.
MPA had committed to all interested parties that we would pass on to the UIPM the high-level themes and any specific issues from both the forum and the survey. The communication to the governing body also included the survey questions, survey results, survey written answers (de-identified) and the three official letters received – one of which was signed by approximately 80 athletes and community members.
In the Executive Summary the MPA Executive wrote:
MPA has listened to all parties who have contacted us including via direct letter or through the online forum and/or the online survey. Throughout this process six MPA Executive meetings were also held to discuss the broader context of the situation.
The resulting position statement of MPA to the UIPM is as follows:
- Modern Pentathlon Australia opposes the removal of Riding from Modern Pentathlon based on the information available and the feedback from our members;
- UIPM to provide Member Federations such data or other information available, including from the IOC, that supports the removal of Riding from Modern Pentathlon to allow consultation with members;
- any proposal for the removal of Riding from Modern Pentathlon be debated at Congress;
- Riding competency and high standards should be enforced for the integrity of the sport and the safety of horses and athletes;
- any proposal for a new discipline should be subject to extensive consultation throughout Modern Pentathlon, including with athletes and coaches.
(* it should be noted that MPA President Kitty Chiller recused herself from the development of the position statement given her role on the UIPM Executive Board, as the President of Oceania).
The full Executive Summary can be found in full here>>>
MPA trusts that the UIPM will consider our position, along with that of other member federations, and looks forward to participating in a meaningful discussion at the Congress on 27-28 November.