UIPM Asia-Pacific Development Centre in Kunming (CHN) gets go-ahead
- Facility will benefit Modern Pentathlon development in China and across Asia
- New altitude training centre and competition venue for global athlete community
- Complex in Yunnan Province to be fully operational by end of 2025
The Union Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM) is delighted to announce that it has entered into agreement for the development of a ground-breaking new Modern Pentathlon facility in Kunming, China.
The development is seen as a transformative base for the UIPM Sports movement in the world’s most populated country, the wider Asian continent and for the global athlete community.
The UIPM Asia-Pacific Development Centre complex, which will include the UIPM Altitude Training Base and the five-in-one UIPM Asia-Pacific International Event Centre, will be built in the capital city of Yunnan province in southwest China.
The state-of-the-art facilities will not only help UIPM in the goal of growing the sport in a key region of focus, it will also provide a key Asian base capable of hosting top-class global, continental and national competitions and events.
The UIPM Asia-Pacific Development Centre will contain an international sports stadium, a five-in-one Pentathlon Stadium with capacity for at least 10,000 seated spectators, a swimming pool with tribune seating 5,000 and a comprehensive training base, which can accommodate as many as 300,000 athletes a year.
The venue will be qualified to host major UIPM international events such as Pentathlon World Championships, Pentathlon World Cups and other related competitions. The surrounding facilities include a rehabilitation and nutrition centre, athlete apartments, a hotel and other commercial services.
According to the facility’s construction timeline, in conjunction with Yunnan Wuxiang Sports Industry Development Co Ltd, the stadium will be completed by the middle of 2024 with the training base and development centre to follow in late 2024. The remainder of the facility will be completed by the end of 2025.
The development centre has received strong support from the Chinese Olympic Committee, Chinese General Administration of Sport and the Yunnan provincial government. The general office of Yunnan’s provincial government stated in a letter to UIPM that “they are attaching great importance to this project”.
The Vice Governor of Yunnan Province, Li Malin, has helped to organise the project and has arranged the relevant functional departments to support its progress. The provincial government will welcome the UIPM President and Secretary General on a forthcoming visit to Yunnan, as they continue to work together to promote Modern Pentathlon in China and the Asia-Pacific region.
Chinese Modern Pentathlon enjoyed its finest moment at the London 2012 Olympic Games when Cao Zhongrong (CHN) took the silver medal in the men’s competition – Asia’s first Olympic medal in the sport.
Zhongrong (CHN) went on to become national coach and China’s continuing development of talent was underlined in recent weeks. Shuai Luo (CHN) was crowned champion of Asia in the Men’s final at the 2022 Asian Modern Pentathlon Championships in Almaty (KAZ), where three of the top four places went to Chinese athletes with Shuhuan Li (CHN) winning bronze.
UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann said: “By helping to develop the Asia-Pacific Development Centre for the benefit of all countries in the region, UIPM can significantly aid the growth and development of the sport across Asia. What’s more, this project can only create positive benefits for athletes around the world, with the possibilities for major UIPM events to be hosted at this dedicated base in China.
“We are very fortunate that such needs could be accommodated by this unique opportunity. We do appreciate all the efforts that the Chinese local government, central sports administration and our new operational partner from Yunnan Province have provided to UIPM.”
UIPM Secretary General Shiny Fang said: “While UIPM has invested so much in the continued growth of its sports pyramid and the provision of tools for athletes and National Federations, such as development kits, we have constantly been fielding requests for assistance to help provide different training opportunities, especially for newly-established NFs.
“As the most populous continent, Asia, together with Oceania, has been identified as a key area of focus for UIPM in recent years. Our sports have so much potential to grow and to be embraced by a young and engaged population who can look to our sports for the dynamic, healthy and positive outlets they provide.
“The project is very ambitious and it will take years to be completed in its entirety. But this is a hugely positive step forward for our sport, and one we know will benefit our entire community for generations to come.”