UIPM's New Competition Format Successfully Tested in Moscow
The format had been created following a two year study on the sport of Modern Pentathlon by independent experts from TV, marketing and media, as well as UIPM representatives, for whom the goal was to create an exciting event for spectators and media without losing the soul of Modern Pentathlon and its unique core value: "determining the most complete athlete".
For the first time in the sport's history, spectators were able to follow a whole Pentathlon from the same seat, without having to move location. A videoboard was used not only to zoom in on the action, but also to provide information on the competition's progression and details of the athletes taking part. The Head to Head saw 24 men and women Pentathletes taking part, amongst them the two last Olympic Champions Andrei Moiseev (RUS) and Zsuzsanna Voros (HUN), and comprised heats and finals. Four athletes competed in each heat, with the two best athletes qualifying to the next round until only 4 remained for the Final.
Following the Fencing, organized on a single piste under a canvas cover, the pentathletes began immediately their handicap-start run, which was combined with stages of shooting on biathlon-type targets, riding one of four parallel and equal riding courses, and swimming 200 meters in a four lane temporary pool. Each stage took place one after another, separated by 400 meter running portions. A mistake in shooting and riding cost the athlete a penalty of a 50m lap run. As a whole, the competitions were very exciting as the leaders changed frequently during each 25 minute race. Whilst the TV spectators, watching the entire event live on a national chain, had commercial breaks between rounds, the spectators in Bitza were entertained by dance shows on the field of play. Amongst the spectators was national Swimming hero and multi-Olympic Champion Alexander Popov, who was very impressed by the new concept of Pentathlon and the multiple skills of Pentathletes. Tatiana Mouratova (RUS), and Dmitry Meliakh (BLR) were the final winners of this very exciting day and both finals were very tight.
Dmitry Svatkovsky, Sydney 2000 Olympic Champion, Russian Olympic Bid Sport Director (Moscow 2012 and now Sotchi 2014) and the Organiser of the test event, stated: “It is the first time that a competition of this size was financed 85% through sponsors, and it is the first time we didn’t have to explain anything about our sport. You just watch it and you understand everything! We were also pleased to be able to offer USD 50,000 to the athletes as prize money”. Dmitry confirmed that they wll organise the event again in Moscow next year.
At the end of the day, UIPM President Klaus Schormann declared: “We promised it and we made it! This has been the result of long and serious work where UIPM listened very carefully to recognised experts from all over the world. It works now, and this new format will open a new future for our sport in general.” The event will be tested in other major European cities throughout next year.
UNION INTERNATIONALE DE PENTATHLON MODERNE (UIPM)
Tel. +377 9777 8555 Fax.+377 9777 8550
For more on Pentathlon, visit the website: http://www.pentathlon.org/