Tokyo Olympics 2020 Bans German Coach for Punching the Horse

Published 08/08/2021, 12:14 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Modern Pentathlon – Women’s Riding – Tokyo Stadium – Tokyo, Japan – August 6, 2021. Annika Schleu of Germany reacts before being eliminated REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado


During the Tokyo Olympics 2020 Pentathlon events, an incident occurred which sparked trouble. A German Pentathlon team coach punched a horse with his fist, which caused a lot of widespread criticism amongst the sporting community. She punched the horse while it napped and received widespread condemnation. While Annika Schleu led the competition going into the showjumping phase, her horse refused to jump after failing on one hurdle. After that, the incident happens which caused a massive uproar as the coach got banned.

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There were many social media posts to support the horse, while it hurt a lot of sentiments.

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Team coach banned at Tokyo Olympics 2020

The incident happened when her horse, Saint Boy, napped. While Annika tried to kick him to move forward, the horse came near to the fence. During this time, coach Kim Raisner leaned over the fence and gave him a blow.

The horse started the race but failed to make a jump, and fear was clear after that. The governing body for Pentathlon gave out a statement regarding the matter.

“The EB reviewed video footage that showed Ms Raisner appearing to strike the horse Saint Boy, ridden by Annika Schleu (GER), with her fist during the riding discipline of the women’s modern pentathlon competition.”

“Her actions were deemed to be in violation of the UIPM competition rules, which are applied to all recognised modern pentathlon competitions including the Olympic Games,” mentioned UIPM.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Modern Pentathlon – Women’s Riding – Tokyo Stadium – Tokyo, Japan – August 6, 2021. Annika Schleu of Germany in action REUTERS/Ivan Alvarado

Must protect horses

The clear outrage amongst many people led to the coach’s ban. There are many questions about the welfare of the horses during the events. Many horse-rider combinations withdrew after spotting blood on their horses.

The welfare of the horses is being questioned after this incident, but the governing body spoke about changing the sport for the betterment of both the horse and the rider.

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“It needs to be redesigned to protect horse and rider. The welfare of the animals and fair competition conditions for the athletes must be the focus,” mentioned DOSB.

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It’s important to keep horses safe during the competitions. But the Tokyo Olympics 2020 officials have stopped a lot of events because of many injuries to horses. Even though the equestrian competitions happen, the need for better care for horses is necessary.

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Jacob Gijy

389 articles

Jacob Gijy is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Gijy finished his Masters in Counselling Psychology and worked in a hospital for 2 years before his passion for sports compelled him to find his way to sports journalism. A fan of the great Tim Duncan, he is always ready to pick up a debate with anyone who does not offer the centre the respect he deserves.

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