After Punching Horse, Germany’s Modern Pentathlon Coach Disqualified

Annika Schleu of Germany fails a jump on Aug. 6. Photo by Dan Mullan. Getty.

Melanie Wilcox Contributor
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The Modern Pentathlon federation disqualified Germany’s modern pentathlon coach, Kim Raisner, for hitting a horse with her fist.

In addition to striking the horse herself, the coach also encouraged rider Annika Schleu to “really hit the horse” when it did not jump on Friday, Aug. 6, Reuters reported.

Raisner will not be part of Saturday’s men’s individual competition at the Tokyo Olympics for her actions that took place during the show jumping, Reuters reported. (RELATED: Bruce Springsteen’s Daughter Will Compete At Tokyo Olympics On Equestrian Team)

Alfons Hoermann, Germany’s Olympic team chief, said Raisner was pulled out of the men’s individual competition and wanted the international federation to change its rules, Reuters reported.

“We were all in agreement that the coach will not be at the competition on Saturday,” Hoermann said.

“We also consider that an urgent review of the incident is necessary, especially in terms of animal protection, and that the national and international federations draw their conclusions,” he added.

Modern pentathletes compete in five different sports – fencing, 200-meter freestyle swimming, equestrian show jumping, and a combined event of pistol shooting and a 3200-meter cross-country run. They ride on horses drawn at random before competing, according to Reuters.

Saint Boy, Schleu’s horse, bucked during his warmup and refused to jump. Schleu’s frustration grew, which led to Raisner urging her to hit the horse, Reuters reported. Raisner punched the horse above the back leg and the horse became more agitated, Reuters reported.

“Rules must change in such a way so that rider and horse are protected,” Hoermann said, according to Reuters. “The focus must be on the welfare of the animals and the fair competition for athletes.”