| Event type

Individual, Women

Date5 – 6 August 2021
Participants36 from 23 countries
FormatScoring by point tables.

The women’s modern pentathlon competition was held for the sixth time in Tokyo. Since the last Olympics in Rio, four World Championships had been held with the winners being Gulnaz Gubaydullina (2017), Anastasiya Prakapenka (2018 and 2021), and Volha Silkina (2019). The other medallists from the last Worlds held in June 2021, less than two months before the Games, were Élodie Clouvel (silver) and Michelle Gulyás (bronze). Clouvel was also the only medallist from Rio who competed in Tokyo, while Gulyás was the only medallist from the 2018 Youth Olympic Games to participate. Gulyás was also ranked number one in the world just before the Games, followed by Kate French and Annika Schleu.

Like Rio 2016, the event was contested over two days with the traditional fencing round-robin held on the first day. Schleu gave the best performance with 29 wins, followed by Kim Se-Hui (26) and Natalya Coyle (24). The competition continued on the second day with the swimming and the best time was set by Gubaydullina with 2:07.31, followed by Gulyás (2:07.48) and Clouvel (2:07.51). After the fencing bonus round, Schleu had a comfortable lead with 551 points, Ulyana Batashova was second with 527 and Kim Se-Hui in third with 524. The riding element caused some controversy and changed the results dramatically.

The last starter of group one, Gubaydullina, with her drawn horse Saint Boy, was unable to complete the course because the horse first refused to jump, and later did not move on, which forced her to abandon the competition. The last starter for the show jumping element was the leader Schleu who had to partner the same horse and she had the same problems with Saint Boy, who again refused to jump and did not go on. Schleu was not allowed to change the horse after the problems Gubaydullina had, as Saint Boy “only” refused to jump three times before not going on anymore. Schleu had already problems to start her round and entered the course in tears, as she knew there was little chance to perform well. It later turned out that her trainer, German national coach Kim Raisner, punched the horse with her fist for not co-operating. She was disqualified from the Games and sent home. After the Games she was ordered by the UIPM to attend a “coach education seminar” with a “humane treatment of animals” before returning to any competition. The riding was headed by the two Lithuanians Gintarė Venčkauskaitė and Laura Asadauskaitė who both collected the maximum of 300 points. The standings after the third part saw Batashova in front with 820 points followed by Kim Se-Hui (810 points), Sarolta Kovács (809), Alice Sotero (807), and French (805).

These points were converted into times which produced a bunched field with the following gaps behind Batashova for the laser-run: Kim Se-Hui (+0:10), Kovács (+0:11), Sotero (+0:13), and French (+0:15). French started quickly and took the lead from Batashova after only 400 m. At the third shooting, French was still in the lead with Sotero, Kovács, and Batashova packed together a few seconds behind. At the 2000 m split, French was about 12 seconds in front of Kovács with Sotero and Batashova another three to four seconds behind, followed by Kim Se-Hui (+0:22), Clouvel (+0:25), and Asadauskaitė (+0:26). French was untouchable as she also managed a fine last shooting attempt. Kovács went out second-from-last shooting, and Asadauskaitė, after a strong running performance, and also had great shootings, followed close behind. French ran home easily and was 15 seconds ahead of Asadauskaitė who overtook Kovács about 600 m from the finishing line. Again, the two Lithuanians Asadauskaitė (11:38.37) and Venčkauskaitė (11:44.37) topped this part as they showed the best combined times.

On the podium were French (aged 30 years 176 days), Asadauskaitė (37 years 159 days), and Kovács (30 years 147 days). All three medallists were older than any other previous female medallist in modern pentathlon. Asadauskaitė became the first female to win two medals in modern pentathlon, and also became the oldest ever medallist of any gender in this sport, being 38 days older than Pavel Lednyov when he won his last medals back in 1980.

1Kate FrenchGBR1385Gold
2Laura AsadauskaitėLTU1370Silver
3Sarolta KovácsHUN1368Bronze
4Alice SoteroITA1363
5İlke ÖzyükselTUR1350
6Élodie ClouvelFRA1347
7Gintarė VenčkauskaitėLTU1343
8Anastasiya PrakapenkaBLR1342
9Ulyana BatashovaROC1341
10Marie OteizaFRA1334
11Kim Se-HuiKOR1330
12Michelle GulyásHUN1325
13Yelena PotapenkoKAZ1322
14Jo MuirGBR1318
15Mayan OliverMEX1310
16Mariana ArceoMEX1302
17Kim Seon-WuKOR1296
18Volha SilkinaBLR1292
19Haydy AdilEGY1289
20Anna MaliszewskaPOL1283
21Samantha SchultzUSA1278
22Zhang XiaonanCHN1275
23Rena ShimazuJPN1271
24Natalya CoyleIRL1268
25Zhang MingyuCHN1268
26Leydi MoyaCUB1261
27Marina CarrierAUS1257
28Rebecca LangrehrGER1248
29Amira KandilEGY1221
30Alise FakhrutdinovaUZB1165
31Annika SchleuGER1088
32Gulnaz GubaydullinaROC1053
33Elena MicheliITA1049
34Natsumi TakamiyaJPN985
35Marcela CuaspudECU860
36Iêda GuimarãesBRA430