Pentathlon United

About Pentathlon United

The independent voice for Pentathletes


Pentathlon United is an athlete-driven movement set up to create a new, dynamic and sustainable Olympic future for Pentathlon worldwide.  

The decision to remove the Equestrian discipline was unfounded, unnecessary and reckless. It was forced through in the face of athlete opposition and warnings of the dangers it posed. The views of Pentathletes have been neglected and ignored for too long. 

 Now, it has threatened our place in the Olympic Games and the future of the sport itself. 

 We want to build a new vision for Pentathlon. One determined by the athletes, addressing the issues that matter for inclusion in the Olympic Programme and determining how to deliver it.

 A sport is nothing without its athletes. Pentathlon United will ensure that athletes’ voices will finally be at the centre of Pentathlon’s decision-making.

Meet The Team

Kate is a double Olympian who won bronze for Great Britain in the Sydney 2000 Games. She is passionate about athlete representation, having been on the UIPM A/C, Chair of the British A/C and the NOC A/C.

Sara competed for Italy in the 2008 Games. She won individual Bronze in the European Championships. She is now a 3-day event rider and trainer.

Eva is one of the most decorated Pentathletes in the history of the sport as 5 times World Champion. She was on the UIPM A/C and helped female MP into the Games in 2000. Eva competed in the Atlanta 1996 Games as a fencer. 

Paul represented Australia in modern pentathlon from 1991 to 1996 and was national Champion in 1995. He is a serial fintech entrepreneur.

Joe is the British 2020 Tokyo Olympic Champion. He started competing in Pentathlon at age 14, 12 years after he started, he won his first Olympic Gold medal. He is training for the Paris 2024 Olympic Games. 

Alex is a 3 time Olympian and was a board member of the UIPM in the 1990’s. He was Competition Manager of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games MP. 

Pavel represented Ukraine for 19 years in MP, qualifying in 4 Olympic Games, winning a silver in Rio 2016. He is still in training for the next Olympic cycle.

Margaux represented USA at 3 Olympic Games, coming from behind in London 2012 to finish fast and agonisingly close to the bronze medal. Margaux was previously on UIPM A/C.

Pernille represented Denmark for 23 years in Modern Pentathlon. She was World Champion in 2000 and competed in the Sydney Games and was on the UIPM EB from 2000-2012.

Helen was a British Modern Pentathlete for 10 years competing at Junior and Senior World Championships. She is a NZL resident and works in Leadership and Development.

Romain has represented France for 4 years at Masters International Championships. He is 2019 European champion in mixed relay and winner of the 2022 Davos Winter Pentathlon.

Daniele is the Italian 1984 double Olympic Champion and 1988 Team silver medallist. He is a 3 time Olympian and double World Champion.

László is one of the greats in the history of our sport, as an Olympic champion (Seoul 1988) and 6-time world champion (across individual, team and relay). He also represented Hungary at the Olympic Games in fencing.

Our Work

Pentathlon United - Explanation of UIPM Congress​

The UIPM Constitution and Statutes were not amended, and horse riding remains part of modern pentathlon, for now.

We understand that there is confusion and concern about what happened at the UIPM Congress in November 2021, particularly given the misleading press release the UIPM put out. We want our athletes’ community to have a clear understanding of the situation. 

We’ve made real progress. The athletes’ community has achieved a huge amount, in a short space of time – imagine how much change we will make by the next UIPM Congress!

October 28th 2021

UIPM sent out the agenda for Congress to the NFs. The agenda included a proposal from the German NF to remove riding from our sport. The German motion was invalid, because our Constitution says that motions have to come from 5 NFs, not 1 NF. Not all UIPM Executive Board (EB) members even knew that the German proposal was there.

October 31st 2021

EB made a secret decision to remove horse riding from our sport  at an EB meeting called on very short notice. The EB is not allowed to make this decision - our Constitution says that this decision can only be made by a ⅔ vote of Congress - and so the EB decision is not valid. The EB has tried to say that there were extraordinary circumstances that allowed them to make this decision (“force majeure”) - but no such circumstances existed and even if they did, this would not entitled the EB to make a decision that fundamentally changes our sport. They are simply not allowed to do that.

November 4th 2021

EB announced their decision to remove horseriding from Modern Pentathlon  “in time for LA28” and announced consultation on what the new 5th discipline will be.

November 10th 2021

The Denmark NF wrote a letter to the UIPM demonstrating that the EB decision on 31 October was invalid and advising that if it was not withdrawn and put before a newly scheduled Congress for proper debate, then Denmark would commence arbitration at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).

November 11th 2021

UIPM hosted a Zoom call with Athletes to tell them there were “extraordinary circumstances” that required the EB to make the decision to remove horse riding and that there was no time to wait until Congress.  The EB also argued that horse riding is not “fair” to current athletes because not all horses are equal standard and not “fair” to future athletes from countries that have less access to horses.

November 17th 2021

The UIPM wrote to the Denmark NF to argue that the extraordinary circumstances did exist (but still provided no proof) and that actually all they had really decided was to submit a proposal to the IOC Program Committee for a Modern Pentathlon format in LA28 that replaced riding with some other new discipline. This is not what the UIPM press releases on 4 November said and it is not what the UIPM told athletes on the 11 November Zoom call. 

November 17th 2021

The Denmark NF filed a legal case at the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) to seek a decision by CAS to overturn the EB’s decision of 31 October because the EB cannot make such a decision.  The UIPM used delay and stalling tactics to ensure that the CAS case  was not heard before Congress.

November 22nd 2021

Vice-President Bouzou issued an Open Letter saying that the EB had not made a decision to amend the Statutes to remove horse-riding and said that only Congress could make the decision.

November 26th 2021

The EB added a new item to the agenda for Congress (Item 17) - asking Congress to confirm the EB’s decision of 31 October - even though (i) our Constitution says the agenda for Congress has to be be fixed and notified 30 days before; and (ii) Joel said no decision had been made.   To  make matters worse, the EB did not notify the NFs that the new agenda item had been added, and sprung it on Congress as a surprise.

November 27th 2021

The UIPM did not point out the new agenda item (Item 17) to Members and did not allow any discussion on the Agenda before voting.

November 27th 2021

Congress voted in favour of item 17 to confirm the EB decision to remove horse riding (66 votes to 15 votes).

November 28th 2021

The EB withdrew the proposal from the German NF to remove riding.

What Does This Mean?

Because the German NF proposal was withdrawn, the UIPM Constitution and Statutes were not amended. Modern Pentathlon still includes horse riding. This was achieved because of the voice of the athletes and the moral courage of the Denmark NF to hold the EB accountable for its actions. All of our efforts were rewarded and recognised.

It’s disappointing that a vote was passed to confirm the EB decision to remove horse riding, because it gives an appearance that most of the modern pentathlon community wants riding removed. We know this isn’t true. However, this Congress vote is meaningless because: (i) the EB decision on 31 October is invalid; and (ii) Item 17 is illegal because the EB did not give Congress 30 days of notice. This will be part of the case at CAS, and we expect to win.

The UIPM President and EB have issued press statements declaring Congress a success and declaring that they have a strong mandate to lead the UIPM and to replace riding with a 5th discipline. This is not a surprise!

But in reality, the UIPM has admitted that it cannot formally remove horse-riding from Modern Pentathlon until the Statutes and Competition Rules & Regulations are amended by Congress, which they are proposing for the 2022 Congress.

So, we now have 12 months until the next UIPM Congress, when no doubt the EB will try again. We must maintain our momentum and our unity - we must remain Pentathlon United.

Over the next year, we must change our NFs. We must push for athlete representation. We must hold our NFs and the UIPM to the high standards of transparency, good governance and ethics that our sport - and indeed the whole Olympic movement - deserves.