UIPM president elected to 8th term, but questions about his ability to lead and unite remain

Klaus Schormann has been president of the UIPM since 1993 and several national federations have called for his resignation over the UIPM’s decision to drop horse riding after Paris 2024

Klaus Schormann (d), presidente de la Federación Internacional de Pentatlón Moderno (UIPM). EFE/Tibor Illyes/Archivo
Klaus Schormann (d), presidente de la Federación Internacional de Pentatlón Moderno (UIPM). EFE/Tibor Illyes/Archivo

Running unopposed, Klaus Schormann was reelected over the weekend as president of the Union de Internationale de Pentathlon Moderne (UIPM) for an eighth term.

The German began his presidency of the UIPM in 1993 and it will be 32 years in charge upon completion of his eighth term.

UIPM First Vice-President Juan Antonio Samaranch Jr., former vice-president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) was reelected after receiving over 90 percent of the vote, while American John Helmick, also running unopposed, was reelected as Treasurer.

The elections were held virtually for the first time from UIPM headquarters in Monaco, and were attended by delegates from across the world.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Modern Pentathlon - Women's Riding - Tokyo Stadium - Tokyo, Japan - August 6, 2021. Annika Schleu of Germany in action REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado/File photo       SEARCH "BEST OF THE TOKYO OLYMPICS" FOR ALL PICTURES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.
Tokyo 2020 Olympics - Modern Pentathlon - Women's Riding - Tokyo Stadium - Tokyo, Japan - August 6, 2021. Annika Schleu of Germany in action REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado/File photo SEARCH "BEST OF THE TOKYO OLYMPICS" FOR ALL PICTURES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY.

Schormann has come under scrutiny by several modern pentathlete groups and federations over the decision to replace horse riding with a new discipline after the completion of the Paris 2024 Games.

Former Sydney 2000 bronze medalist Kate Allenby, spokesperson for the group Pentathlon United, has called for the entire UIPM board to resign and to not submit their proposal to the IOC to replace horse riding.

“If you do, the athletes are clear you do not speak for them and you do not do so on their behalf,” said Allenby.

Pentathlon United also sent the following tweet after the elections.

Despite the outcry from Pentathlon United and other national federations, the delegates in attendance at the UIPM elections voted 81 percent in favor of ratifying the UIPM Executive Board’s decision to open a fifth discipline consultation process, which was previously announced to all athletes on November 4.

The UIPM has submitted a provisional proposal to the IOC for the Los Angeles 2028 Games of a modern pentathlon program without horse riding.

A new discipline to replace horse riding is expected to be announced sometime in 2022.

Schormann, naturally, was delighted with the results of the voting.

“As UIPM President, I am very happy we will retain the team that has worked so hard for so many years in the interests of our Union and our sporting movement,” said Schormann. “This allows us to continue our discussions, to focus on priorities for the future with a visionary spirit and a commitment to innovation.”

“I ask our national federations to remain with us in this spirit so we are united, working in solidarity for the future of all our sports so we can keep modern pentathlon in the Olympics.”

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