Following the Tokyo 2020 punching incident, horse riding is set to be withdrawn from the modern pentathlon.
During this year’s edition of the Olympic Games, German equestrian trainer Kim Raisner was spotted striking a horse after it failed to cooperate with its rider. Her actions led to a global-wide scandal, as a number of animal rights activists claimed she was showing animal cruelty.
According to Unilad, modern pentathlon chiefs are now considering whether to remove the use of horses entirely from the games, in an attempt to preserve their Olympic status.
Reportedly, the sport’s governing body has already “voted secretly” to replace horse riding with cycling ahead of the Paris 2024 Olympics. As per The Guardian, an announcement is expected to be made in the next few days.
We see a lot of triumph at the #Olympics but there's so much tragedy.
Annika Schleu will likely see her #ModernPentathlon gold medal slip after her horse refused several times before abandoning in "an absolute real-life nightmare".#Tokyo2020 pic.twitter.com/V9bLv482yv
— Gus Bruno (@gusbruno7) August 6, 2021
Raisner coach was captured cruelly striking a horse named Saint Boy after it refused to go along with its rider, gold-medal hopeful Annika Schleu.
As Schleu was desperately trying to get Saint Boy to cooperate, the coach punched the animal in an attempt to make it compose itself. The disturbing incident left the rider in tears.
Meanwhile, Raisner was thrown out of the Games for her cold-blooded behavior. The coach, as well as the rider, were accused by social media users of animal abuse.
What’s more, actress Kaley Cuoco deemed the appalling scene a “disgrace,” and offered to buy the horse to “show it the life it should have.” The American TV star, who already owns 25 horses and competes in show riding herself, slammed the German team, saying:
“Disgusting on all levels. This is our sport. This does not represent our sport. This rider and her ‘trainer’ are a disgrace. I’ll buy that horse outright and show it the life it should have.
Name your price.”
Although many animal lovers would welcome the withdrawal of horse riding from the Olympics, some of those involved in the sport have already condemned the move. One of them is former British Olympic modern pentathlete Kate Allenby. She claimed it would be a “disaster” for the event, adding:
“It’s not modern pentathlon if it hasn’t got riding in it.”