Tokyo Pentathlon SJ

MuddyMonster

Well-Known Member
Joined
22 September 2015
Messages
2,700
I have to be honest and say the riding (bar a couple) was one of the most unfair thing on horses I have ever seen. Taking advantage of a horses kind nature, it was horrifying to watch.

That will make people really question why horses are in the Olympics. Why not make it 1m or do a dressage test?
I wondered if it would be fairer on the horse to make it a dressage test?

The horse's seem to go through a rigorous testing process, is there a minimum riding ability required for the riders? Or is it a case of if the other scores are high enough to get through to the riding stage, the competitor gets to jump?

If a competitor is a weaker swimmer, they just ruin their own chances but some of the riding I saw, made me question the fairness to the horse (not that I could do better ...)?

ETA: It's a shame the riders don't get penalised for their horsemanship or sportsmanship (or lack of) - I personally didnt like the Irish rider (Nadine, maybe?) jumping off without a pat to the horse and throwing the reins at the groom whilst walking off.
 

Annagain

Well-Known Member
Joined
10 December 2008
Messages
13,369
I have to be honest and say the riding (bar a couple) was one of the most unfair thing on horses I have ever seen. Taking advantage of a horses kind nature, it was horrifying to watch.

That will make people really question why horses are in the Olympics. Why not make it 1m or do a dressage test?
I think most people who don't do / know about equestrian sport will see it as "naughty horses" and will be revelling in the drama and the 'lottery' aspect that the horses seem to provide. They won't see that the riders have that much of a role or that the horses are being put in a horrible position. That Belgian (?) girl who was shouting (just generally, I think, not specifically at her horse) at the end of her round rode terribly, just chasing him faster with reins like washing lines and not holding him together but the casual viewer will see her kicking and him refusing as his fault.
 

Upthecreek

Well-Known Member
Joined
9 May 2019
Messages
1,648
I think the height of the fences is ridiculous given that it’s one element of the event. The less confident riders were behind the movement and hanging on the horse’s mouths. If competitors can’t shoot very well or swim very well they are only damaging their own chances of success. But to not be particularly good at show jumping and have to jump around a course at that height does not seem at all fair on the horses. Saint Boy’s second round was just awful to watch, but your average non-horsey spectator will just think it was a horse behaving badly ☹️
 

NinjaPony

Well-Known Member
Joined
25 March 2011
Messages
2,186
I can’t understand why it’s a 1.20 metre course when it’s been shown time and time again that the majority of competitors can’t cope?

I wonder what the issue is, lack of training for the riding element? The strange horse? Both?

Either way they need to sort it out, it’s really not fair on the horses.

Why can’t they just do medium level dressage test, and have a schooling session the day before on the horse they will be riding?

Less spectator friendly perhaps, but surely better than this!
 

Annagain

Well-Known Member
Joined
10 December 2008
Messages
13,369
I think the height of the fences is ridiculous given that it’s one element of the event. The less confident riders were behind the movement and hanging on the horse’s mouths. If competitors can’t shoot very well or swim very well they are only damaging their own chances of success. But to not be particularly good at show jumping and have to jump around a course at that height does not seem at all fair on the horses. Saint Boy’s second round was just awful to watch, but your average non-horsey spectator will just think it was a horse behaving badly ☹️
Maybe riders should be assessed, say twice a year and given a height. They then have to jump the height they have been deemed to be capable at - with only maximum points available to those jumping the biggest heights. This would maintain the specatcle but keep people and horses safe and encourage them to either work at being really good at a lower height to get decent clear rounds or improve their riding to be able to jump at the next height and go for maximum points. Either way the riding skills would improve and the horses would benefit from that. Groups at 1m, 1.10 and 1.20 with a drop of 30 points at each height would probably work.
 

Mynstrel

Well-Known Member
Joined
6 November 2008
Messages
390
Location
Lancashire
What's worrying is when you listen to some of the athlete's training plans - something like fencing and shooting twice a week, running and swimming 4 times a week. Riding, one lesson a month - on a borrowed horse... Why on earth do they not put more time into the one part of the sport that could do them serious harm?!?!?
 

Upthecreek

Well-Known Member
Joined
9 May 2019
Messages
1,648
Maybe riders should be assessed, say twice a year and given a height. They then have to jump the height they have been deemed to be capable at - with only maximum points available to those jumping the biggest heights. This would maintain the specatcle but keep people and horses safe and encourage them to either work at being really good at a lower height to get decent clear rounds or improve their riding to be able to jump at the next height and go for maximum points. Either way the riding skills would improve and the horses would benefit from that. Groups at 1m, 1.10 and 1.20 with a drop of 30 points at each height would probably work.
I definitely think they need to assess their riding ability somehow, but the fact it’s not their horse and they are jumping 1.20 still blows my mind. I can’t imagine many of us who’ve been riding for decades would relish the idea of doing that. It’s hard enough on a horse you know inside out, never mind one you’ve never sat on! Oh and the small matter of an Olympic medal being at stake probably ups the pressure and nerves somewhat!!
 

LeneHorse

Well-Known Member
Joined
8 April 2007
Messages
2,564
I didn't see the whole thing but all the horses I saw were in snaffles - is this part of the rules? It is quite unusual to see show jumpers just in snaffles so maybe some of these horses are normally in different bits. It might explain some of the control issues.
I felt very sorry for Saint boy, he looked very anxious. A reaction that extreme says pain to me I'm afraid.
I hope they are using fresh horses for the men tomorrow
 

Cloball

Well-Known Member
Joined
19 October 2017
Messages
1,843
I read that Kate French did Tetrathlons previously so she must have a fair bit of riding experience under her belt.
I'll admit it's an odd sport. Invented specifically for the olympics and to identify the best all around military personnel.

The skills are those needed to escape being held by an enemy. First you have to sword fight your way out, swim across a moat, ride a strange horse to safety, then run and shoot the final stage to safety.
I Enjoy the old military sports like tent pegging but I'm just not sure it works anymore. A smaller course or a riding club horse type event where there is a bit of equitation and a couple of jumps maybe? Sword Lance and revolver? I wonder if there are any military entrants these days. I suppose jumping is just easier to mark.

What's worrying is when you listen to some of the athlete's training plans - something like fencing and shooting twice a week, running and swimming 4 times a week. Riding, one lesson a month - on a borrowed horse... Why on earth do they not put more time into the one part of the sport that could do them serious harm?!?!?
I considered taking up modern pent when I was at uni but my running was never good enough.

The Brits tend to do well as the pool of athletes come almost exclusively through pony club and tetrathlon so horsemanship is the foundation. A lot of the other nations do not do this.

There is a qualifying process and a circuit of competitions so it isn't like these athletes have never competed before or no one has ever seen them jump before. It seems very odd the lack of training in the jumping though!
 

HashRouge

Well-Known Member
Joined
16 February 2009
Messages
7,723
Location
Manchester
I'm just watching the Pentathlon SJ now. There are some really lovely horses here! I know that 1m20 is a lot and a lot of us certainly couldn't manage it on an unfamiliar (or even a familiar!) horse. But I do hate this element of the pentathlon - it's so unfair on the horses unless they're lucky enough to get one of the better riders. So many of these riders have very insecure seats, which is mad considering how high they're trying to jump!
 

Rowreach

Well-Known Member
Joined
13 May 2007
Messages
13,578
Location
Northern Ireland
If they wanted to stick with the military roots a LeTrec or working equitation type test would work well.

Or something like a short dressage test followed by say 5 fences with marks for style/safety/horsemanship as well as the penalties for a knock down.
Style jumping would make a lot more sense, but I'd rather see it taken out altogether.
 

OrangeAndLemon

Well-Known Member
Joined
5 October 2015
Messages
2,530
Location
Cheshire
I thought the Irish competitor (Coyle?) was a really good rider, but she was a bit ungracious at the end wasn't she?!
Agree, no pat for the horse, she just jumped off and walked away from it as if it was a piece of apparatus rather than a loved and cared for animal. I think the final rider put this in context when she had a terrible ride and yet still patted it when the bell rang for her elimination.
 

HashRouge

Well-Known Member
Joined
16 February 2009
Messages
7,723
Location
Manchester
Jeez. Surely, surely Saint Boy shouldn't have been used again after his first round? I think he got a pretty rough ride from his first rider, which really didn't help, and I don't think it's fair, at all, for a horse to be asked to go again with another strange rider when it is clearly that upset. Ignoring the fact it was pretty rough for the German competitor, I just think that from a horse welfare point of view, surely someone should have said, you know what, maybe let's just give this horse a break.
 

MuddyMonster

Well-Known Member
Joined
22 September 2015
Messages
2,700
If they wanted to stick with the military roots a LeTrec or working equitation type test would work well.

Or something like a short dressage test followed by say 5 fences with marks for style/safety/horsemanship as well as the penalties for a knock down.
I'd love to see a Trec format at the Olympics :)

I thought the Irish competitor (Coyle?) was a really good rider, but she was a bit ungracious at the end wasn't she?!
I think this annoyed and saddened me the most. She can obviously ride well so to be so un-horsemanship & un-sportsman like at the end, seems worse. I'd like to have seen mark's taken off for that alone!

Yes, she might not have had the perfect round but show the horse some thanks and respect.
 
Last edited:

spotty_pony

Well-Known Member
Joined
29 July 2005
Messages
11,721
Location
East Midlands
Does anybody know if this will be available to watch on iplayer later if it was on the red button? I am intrigued to watch now as have heard so much about it both on here and on Facebook.
 

Willowbankstables

Well-Known Member
Joined
25 July 2021
Messages
54
I’m 😳😳 at the people blaming the horses! They didn’t ask to be there, they have to be of a certain standard to be picked but then they are subjected to variable and questionable standards of riders and are expected to perform like an inanimate bit of equipment, to make the sport “fair”?
Absolutely agree. I didn't see the German rider this morning, but it's just been shown on BBC. I had very little sympathy for the rider; I understand why she was upset but bawling and sobbing on the poor horse isn't going to solve the situation. I felt dreadfully sorry for the horse who looked totally scared and confused. All I saw was rider error in the fences it refused. Why on earth do they have to ride an unknown horse!?
 

onlytheponely

Well-Known Member
Joined
28 January 2011
Messages
387
Poor Saint Boy was being literally hauled around in a Cheltenham gag :-( It was really horrible to watch.

I only happened to see it because when I turned the TV on it was on the channel this was being shown on. The fact they let them wear spurs as well when some of them have no real idea of where their lower legs are most of the time has made my blood boil for decades.
I can't remember whether it was Beijing or Seoul when it was absolute carnage, very surprised they're still allowed to do this.
 

milliepops

Wears headscarf aggressively
Joined
26 July 2008
Messages
25,601
the riders who had clearly put the time in did well in that phase, i think they set the example that others should seek to follow. I found this file earlier when looking for the rules, seems to be a training sort of syllabus... if you consider some have come up through PC you can see how inadequate this would be by comparison :eek:

https://www.uipmworld.org/sites/default/files/riding_guidelines_v6.pdf
 

Bernster

Well-Known Member
Joined
14 August 2011
Messages
7,102
Location
London
Modern pentathlon is bonkers! I agree 1.20 seems excessive and a different format could make more comfortable viewing and more comfortable for horse and rider. Haven’t seen saint boy go round yet 2nd time but most of these horses are little troopers!
 
Top