• The modern pentathlon riding event was marked by several crashes.

  • The German favorite Annika Schleu, well in the lead, was eliminated by a horse who did not want to know anything. 

  • According to the French, the frames offered in Tokyo nevertheless lent themselves to very good passages. 

From our special correspondent in Tokyo,

Silver medalist in Rio, Elodie Clouvel has to deal with her disappointment of the moment, only sixth in the modern pentathlon.

But the Frenchwoman goes spontaneously towards Annika Schleu, along the Tokyo Stadium shooting range, like several participants.

They all sympathize after seeing the German in tears, unable to blow up her horse in the riding test, even though she was largely leading the general classification and could dream of winning the gold medal.

The name of the applicant?

Saint-Boy, born March 20, 1989 in Japan, from the union of Interest Daily and Chercheur d'Or, a stallion who obviously did not pass on his glorious surname to his descendants.

Saint-Boy, presumed guilty?

The competition having been generally a game of massacre, with a good fifteen competitors eliminated by a recalcitrant horse chosen at the end of a drawing of lots, we inquire a little: but in which lamasery have we dug up Rossinante alike, more stubborn than a Castile mule? The so-called Saint-Boy still has 21 banks, according to his identity card, and at that age, we begin to have old beast moods, certainly. “There is no age limit, meets Sébastien Deleigne, the coach of the Blues. The horses are presented by professional riders two days before the event to a jury ”. Which retains 18 out of 36, with reserve horses if ever.

🐎 🇩🇪 Largely at the head of the modern pentathlon, Annika Schleu is eliminated after the show jumping and the refusal to jump from her drawn horse Saint Boy.

Terrible disappointment!

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“At that time the athletes are not allowed to mount them but we film them on video”, continues Deleigne, in order to get a first idea of ​​the animal when the draw falls, just after the bonus fencing event.

This is where Marie Oteiza was able to discover Kairo, a 21-year-old gelding, who fell on her while scratching.

“From the practice, we saw that it was a horse that had a small stride with a small gallop.

The goal was to adapt to his stride and to work well on my surroundings ”.

"High quality horses"

A preparatory work which is carried out above all at the time of "relaxation". Ten minutes on the flat and ten minutes to jump before the big swim of the competition. The two Frenchwomen, who train year round with the Republican Guard, have nothing but good to say about the Tokyo herd. “From my first jumps, I felt that he was an incredible horse, it was a big kif,” assures Marie Oteiza. We are talking about owners' horses, which do high quality jumps. After perhaps some were less used to having horses that send like we had today. Annika is a good rider but she misses it sometimes ”.

Elodie Clouvel also believes that there is nothing to complain about the quality of the horses.

“It's riding, it's very difficult in pentathlon.

Today we had a big course, with obstacles at 1.20m.

Annika, I thought it was her day, with the lead she had, I can't explain what could have happened.

You have to become one with your horse, it's not just luck either ”.

Elena Micheli, a 21-year-old Italian girl whom Cristbal 21 has thrown to the ground several times in the middle of the bars, did not seem to blame him more than that:

“It's never the horse's fault.

I couldn't give him what he wanted and he responded differently.

I feel responsible for what happened, it's part of the game in pentathlon.

I think experience is a big factor in riding, and I'm still young ”.

Annika Schleu is no longer so young, but we felt her just as helpless on Saint-Boy, who had already brought hell to Russian Gubaydullina in the first pass.

Why did she not ask to change, if the regulations provide for it?

“Obviously she could not, imagines Sébastien Deleigne.

After four refusals of an obstacle, the horse is disqualified, but he did not have to do the same on the first pass.

It must have gone well between them at the time of relaxation ”.

Men will be entitled to the same horses

If we did not have the heart to question Schleu directly, his trainer defended the same thesis to our German colleagues, also in tears. “Everything was fine when we started. The horse must have a problem with the arena, he didn't even gallop, he just wanted to come back to the gate. There is no rule for the horse to come out. not from the corner. ”This will not prevent Saint-Boy from being proposed again on Saturday during the boys' test, which we imagine already petrified at the idea of ​​falling on the maggot. Not necessarily, specifies us. Marie Oteiza.

“There are horses that are much more nervous than others, who like to jump a lot and need a lot of control to keep them in front of the obstacle.

Maybe it's too hard a horse for women and it will do very well for men tomorrow ”.

We will still wait a bit before wishing the two Valentin (Prades and Belaud) to fall on it in the draw.


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