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Tribute to Ainars Leja (1931-2023)

UIPM Family

One of the founding fathers of Modern Pentathlon in Latvia died in January 2023, aged 91.

Ainars Leja, who created the Latvia Modern Pentathlon Federation and gave the sport in 1954, was presented with the UIPM Honorary Medal by UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann in Riga (LAT) for his services to Modern Pentathlon.

Together with fellow coach Ainars Zvirgzdins, he trained 104 pentathletes including world junior champion Uldis Putnins and silver medallist Vladimirs Kravcovs, and had a long and successful tenure as senior coach of the national team.

Janis Liepins, President of the Latvia Modern Pentathlon Federation, said: “We are very sad that Mr Ainars Leja, owner of the UIPM Honorary Member Medal, outstanding coach and personality, founder and creator of the Latvian Modern Pentathlon Federation, has passed away from our modern pentathlon team at the age of 91.”

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