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New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event IV: All you need to know

  • First indoor test of Obstacle Discipline to take place in Zielona Gora (POL)
  • World’s leading junior (U22) pentathletes will be main participants
  • Janusz Peciak OLY: ‘This change will help us to develop the sport worldwide’

From ancient Ankara to the streets of Manila, to the Adriatic seaside. From sand to asphalt and back again. And now the New Pentathlon Discipline Test Event journey goes indoors.

Over the next two days, the WOSiR Drzonkow training centre in Zielona Gora (POL) will host the last of four momentous Obstacle Discipline tests undertaken in 2022.

This time the participants will be drawn from the Under 22 ranks, with pentathletes from 23 countries across six continents currently competing in the UIPM 2022 Pentathlon Junior World Championships.

Another bespoke obstacle racing course has been constructed within the indoor arena at the WOSiR Drzonkow centre, which has hosted numerous Modern Pentathlon competitions especially for younger athletes in recent years.

The obstacle arrangement will closely resemble the sequences made popular worldwide by the SASUKE/Ninja Warrior TV phenomenon, as the course was constructed in collaboration with the rights holder, Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS).

The course is comprised of the following eight obstacles:

  1. Sonic steps
  2. Double swing
  3. Tilting ladders
  4. Floating steps
  5. Globe grasper
  6. Single cat grab
  7. Ring toss
  8. Warped wall

The action will take place on Friday October 7 and Saturday October 8, and junior athletes will participate according to how far they have progressed in the individual World Championships categories, where 36 men will compete on Friday and 18 women and 18 men in the Finals on Saturday.

Many of the current U22 generation will be maturing into senior contenders during the Los Angeles 2028 cycle – when a new-look Modern Pentathlon will be introduced to the Olympic Games, pending approval by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

Both days of the Test Event will consist of a demonstration and warm-up led by Polish elite obstacle athletes, followed by a free training session and then a competition. Friday’s session will take place from 2pm-5.30pm local time, and on Saturday from 12.30-3pm.

After the competition, all athletes, coaches and observers will be invited to provide feedback on their experience, as per the previous three Test Events in Ankara (TUR), Manila (PHI) and Lignano Sabbiadoro (ITA).

Dr Klaus Schormann, UIPM President, said: “We already had very successful test events in Ankara, Manila and Lignano and now we have a very special opportunity to test the format indoors. How the obstacles will be set up is very close to Ninja Warrior and it’s very important for the Union that we test different course styles.

“We saw high-profile athletes test the course in Ankara, then a mixed group in the Philippines, then the youths in Italy and here now the juniors who are already very skilled in all disciplines. It will be very important to evaluate with the Working Group the feedback we receive and consider what kind of obstacles we will later choose and what other steps we can take to create flexibility all year round, indoors and outdoors, for training and competitions.

“I’m very excited to see that many nations are willing to compete and I know there is a big appetite for them to test this concept and have a feeling for this change, which can make our multi-sport more accessible around the world. I think it will be a great experience for all participants this weekend.”

Yasser Hefny OLY, UIPM Athletes Committee Chair, said: “I’m looking forward to this Test Event because I am confident it will be a strong sequel to the previous three successful tests. This is the best and most professional testing process I have witnessed since I started Modern Pentathlon.

“Test Event IV differs from the previous ones because it will test our juniors and will be held in an indoor venue, which is interesting because it proves the new discipline is very flexible and can be adapted according to multiple locations, terrains, weather conditions and so on.”

Janusz Peciak OLY, UIPM Executive Board Member for Sport and Polish Modern Pentathlon Association President, said: “I was in Ankara for the first test event and saw the course, and I think it was very successful. I spoke with a lot of athletes who participated and they were very happy with the change we are undertaking.

“We are going in an excellent direction to make the sport accessible in all countries around the world, especially Africa and Asia. At this moment, many countries cannot afford to provide Riding because every year it gets more and more expensive, and I know especially young athletes love obstacle courses. So I know that this change will help us to develop the sport worldwide.

“It’s great that we are testing Obstacle Discipline in different environments, especially outdoor but also indoor, because some time I would like to see that we compete in Pentathlon all through the winter, not only in summer. Testing the event indoors is very interesting and what I see here in Poland is a very nice set-up.”

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