Modern pentathlon body approves obstacle course discipline to replace horse riding

Modern Pentathlon Obstacle Discipline
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Modern pentathlon’s international governing body (UIPM) approved the addition of an obstacle course discipline as it bids to stay in the Olympic program.

UIPM adopted the new event by member federations vote at its congress on Saturday, six months after it chose to test out the obstacle discipline from among 60 proposals to replace horse riding.

The sport’s international governing body said last year that horse riding had to be removed to boost the chances of keeping modern pentathlon’s place in the Olympics beyond 2024.

UIPM has said horse riding will remain part of the modern pentathlon at the 2024 Paris Games. The obstacle discipline would make its Olympic debut in 2028, should modern pentathlon be on the program at those Games.

Of the 97 member federations in attendance Saturday, 83 voted and 69 of them voted in favor of the obstacle discipline. Eleven voted against and three abstained.

“The result provides UIPM with a mandate to propose a new-look modern pentathlon – with obstacle discipline replacing riding – to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for inclusion in the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games,” according to a Saturday press release from UIPM.

UIPM previously called it “the biggest shakeup” since the sport made its Olympic debut in 1912.

The sport has been on the Olympic program ever since but was not on the initial sports list for the 2028 Los Angeles Games. Neither was boxing nor weightlifting, sports with organizational and doping problems to address. Sports can still be added to the 2028 program as early as next year.

It has been reported that horse riding was encouraged to be replaced from modern pentathlon after an incident of horse abuse at the Tokyo Olympics — a German coach hit a horse that refused to jump — but IOC President Thomas Bach did not mention that in his public comments about the event’s Olympic future last December.

“They must demonstrate a significant reduction in cost and complexity and improvements across the areas for safety, accessibility, universality, appeal for youth and general public,” Bach said then.

Star modern pentathletes have voiced disapproval of replacing horse riding with an obstacle discipline. Reigning Olympic champion Joe Choong of Great Britain reportedly said he will quit the sport if and when the change is implemented.

The other modern pentathlon events are fencing, swimming and a combined running and shooting event. Modern pentathlon was created by the founder of the modern Olympics, Baron Pierre de Coubertin, and has roots in the duties required of a soldier from the late 19th century.

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2022 Grand Prix Final figure skating TV, live stream schedule

Ilia Malinin
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The Grand Prix Final, the most exclusive figure skating competition of the season and a preview of March’s world championships, airs live on Peacock and E! this week.

The top six per discipline from the six-event fall Grand Prix Series gather in Turin, Italy, at the Palavela, the 2006 Olympic venue. It’s the first Grand Prix Final in three years after the 2020 and 2021 events were canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The U.S. qualified skaters in all four disciplines for the first time since 2007, led by the world’s top-ranked man. Ilia Malinin, who turned 18 last Friday, has been the story of the season, becoming the first skater to land a quadruple Axel in competition.

Malinin, the reigning world junior champion, won both of his Grand Prix starts and posted the best total score among all fall events, edging world champion Shoma Uno of Japan. Malinin and Uno will go head-to-head for the first time this season at the Final.

Isabeau Levito, a 15-year-old world junior champion, is the youngest American at a Final since Caroline Zhang in 2007. She qualified in fifth place. The favorites are Japan’s Mai Mihara and Kaori Sakamoto and Belgian Loena Hendrickx.

The U.S. also qualified two pairs’ teams — world champions Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier and Emily Chan and Spencer Howe — and two ice dance couples — three-time world medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates and Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker.

For the first time, the Final has no Russian skaters. They are banned from international competition due to the war in Ukraine. For the first time in 25 years, there are no Chinese skaters. China’s top pairs’ teams did not compete in the fall Grand Prix Series.

Grand Prix Final Broadcast Schedule
All TV coverage also streams on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app for subscribers.

Day Event Time (ET) Platform
Thursday Pairs’ Short Program 1:20-2:15 p.m. Peacock
Men’s Short Program 2:35-3:20 p.m. Peacock
Friday Pairs’ Free Skate 11:35 a.m.-12:40 p.m. Peacock
Rhythm Dance 1:50-2:45 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Short Program 3:05-3:50 p.m. Peacock
Saturday Men’s Short Program* 6:30-7:30 a.m. E!
Men’s Free Skate 7:30-8:30 a.m. E!, Peacock
Women’s Short Program* 8:30-9:30 a.m. E!
Free Dance 1:40-2:40 p.m. Peacock
Women’s Free Skate 3-3:55 p.m. Peacock
Sunday Highlights* 4-6 p.m. NBC

*Delayed broadcast.

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Aleksander Aamodt Kilde sweeps Beaver Creek World Cup races

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Norway’s Aleksander Aamodt Kilde held off Swiss Marco Odermatt for a second consecutive day to sweep World Cup races in Beaver Creek, Colorado, this weekend.

Kilde won Sunday’s super-G by two tenths of a second over Odermatt, one day after edging Odermatt by six hundredths. France’s Alexis Pinturault took third as the podium was made up of the last three men to win the World Cup overall title, the biggest annual prize in ski racing.

This season’s overall figures to be a two-man battle between Kilde, the 2019-20 champion, and Odermatt, the reigning champion, and could come down to March’s World Cup Finals. They’ve combined to win the first five of 38 scheduled races.

The top American Sunday was River Radamus, who finished an impressive 16th given his start number was 57. Radamus’ best event is the giant slalom.

Ryan Cochran-Siegle, the Olympic super-G silver medalist, and Travis Ganong, who was third in Beaver Creek last year, both skied out.

The men’s World Cup heads next weekend to Val d’Isere, France, for a giant slalom and slalom.

ALPINE SKIING: Results | Broadcast Schedule

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