Olympic event axed after horse punched at Tokyo Games

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·Sports Reporter
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German modern pentathlon coach Kim Raisner (pictured right) hitting a horse and Annika Schleu (pictured left) upset after her horse didn't cooperate during the Olympics.
German modern pentathlon coach Kim Raisner (pictured right) sparked uproar after appearing to strike the horse during the Olympics, which competitor Annika Schleu (pictured left) was riding. (Images: Getty Images/Twitter)

Horse riding is reportedly set to be dropped from the Modern Pentathlon at the Games for the next Olympics after controversy erupted in Tokyo.

During the Tokyo Olympic Games, Annika Schleu - who held the lead heading into the horse riding event - fell completely out of contention when her mount absolutely refused to cooperate.

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However, coach Kim Raisner was later banned from the men's individual competition at the Tokyo Olympics after footage showed her hitting a horse with her fist and urged rider Schleu to "really hit" the horse when it refused to jump.

The Modern Pentathlon federation (UIPM) said Raisner had been disqualified because of her actions during the show jumping.

However, Schleu wasn't the only competitor to suffer from a frustrated horse.

Top ranked Michelle Gulyas and Ireland's Natalya Coyle suffered similar fates with their horses as they saw their own podium hopes crushed, dropping out of the top 10 and out of contention.

At the time, Germany's Olympic team chief Alfons Hoermann demanded urgent rule changes from the international federation.

"Rules must change in such a way so that rider and horse are protected," Hoermann said.

"The focus must be on the welfare of the animals and the fair competition for athletes."

Governing body to make horse riding decision

Now, Olympic news site 'Inside the Games' has reported the discipline will be removed from the sport.

And the International Modern Pentathlon Union could replace the discipline with cycling.

UIPM didn't deny to Inside the Games the discipline would be dropped.

The governing body released a statement, which read: "As part of UIPM’s commitment to maintaining a strong, dynamic profile for modern pentathlon, a series of strategic meetings are being held."

"These meetings will include an upcoming call with national federations later this week. The outcome of these meetings will be detailed in a press release to be published on 4 November.”

Following the Tokyo Olympic Games, the UIPM President Klaus Schormann said the incident involving Raisner was a pivotal learning moment.

"The issues that arose during the riding competition of the women’s final in Tokyo demanded swift and significant reflection and remedy," Schormann wrote for Inside the Games.

"Within days, the UIPM had introduced new measures to improve horse welfare in our sport.

"A working group of the foremost experts has since been established and has set about exploring and addressing both the incidents during the women’s final and the proposed changes."

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