An online survey has found that the majority of pentathletes believe it is "unlikely or very unlikely" that modern pentathlon will be included at Los Angeles 2028 ©Getty Images

More than 70 per cent of athletes and coaches questioned in a survey fear modern pentathlon will not feature at the 2028 Olympics in Los Angeles while even more expressed their lack of confidence in the running of the International Modern Pentathlon Union (UIPM).

The Pentathlon United pressure group has released the results of its online poll in a bid to gauge the view of pentathletes with the sport facing uncertainty over its Olympic place.

Modern pentathlon, created by modern Olympic founder Pierre de Coubertin, has featured at the Games since its introduction in 1912 but has been left off the provisional programme for Los Angeles 2028.

There were a total of 198 responses to the survey with participants coming from at least 18 countries.

Fifty-eight per cent of those questioned were athletes, with the rest made up of coaches, officials and fans.

According to the figures, 70.3 per cent of athletes and coaches felt it was "unlikely or very unlikely" that modern pentathlon will be included at Los Angeles 2028.

The survey also found that there remained scepticism over the running of the UIPM, with 87.4 per cent of athletes and coaches saying that they were "unconfident or very confident" that the current leadership are the "right people to safeguard the sport for the future".

Britain's Sydney 2000 bronze medallist Kate Allenby, a key voice within Pentathlon United, told insidethegames that it was a "real worry" that so many people within the sport were not optimistic over its chances of featuring at Los Angeles 2028.

"We have got 72 [quota] slots in the Olympic Games so 198 respondents is quite a high number," said Allenby.

"It is a statistically significant sample…and such a huge part of the pentathlon community don’t think that pentathlon will be included in LA 2028.

"[UIPM President] Klaus [Schormann] survived his vote of no confidence at the Congress last year but there is still a lot of dissatisfaction under the surface and a much bigger dissatisfaction about what the leadership are doing.

"We need people with credibility at the top of our sport, people who have credibility with the IOC [International Olympic Committee].

"There are so many things that aren’t being done."

It is the first survey Pentathlon United has conducted since last July when it found that more than 92 pentathletes preferred horse riding as the option for the fifth modern pentathlon discipline.

Since then, the UIPM staged its Congress in November which saw members vote in favour of obstacle racing replacing equestrian after Paris 2024.

UIPM President Klaus Schormann claims that there is
UIPM President Klaus Schormann claims that there is "more harmony" among athletes - a remark rejected by Olympic medallist and Pentathlon United member Kate Allenby ©UIPM

Schormann also survived a motion of no confidence at the meeting after the majority of delegates voted against his dismissal.

A UIPM spokesperson told insidethegames: "The UIPM sports global family consists of almost 100,000 registered athletes from 133 member nations - a number that is poised to grow with the integration of obstacle to modern pentathlon in place of riding. 

"Registered athletes can express their views via the UIPM Athletes Committee (elected by athletes) or via their National Federation.

"The integration of obstacle to modern pentathlon was backed by 83 per cent of National Federations who voted in favour of the relevant motion at the UIPM 2022 Congress only five months ago. 

"UIPM continues to work relentlessly on behalf of its member community to preserve the status of modern pentathlon within the Olympic Games."

Replacing riding has sparked widespread concern and anger within the sport from athletes claiming they had no input into the move.

Speaking to Reuters earlier this month, Schormann claimed that there was less friction within modern pentathlon.

"I can't summarise the view of every athlete but I feel strongly there's more harmony now," said Schormann.

"That's because our union has done so much in the past year to answer the concerns of anybody who had doubts about the path we must take."

Allenby said Schormann’s comments were the reason behind the launch of Pentathlon United’s latest survey which, she claims, proves that he is wrong.

"The UIPM survey in 2022 says that the athlete community was overwhelming against the decision to replace riding," said Allenby.

"Since then, despite all the propaganda that the UIPM has done, this survey says the dialogue remains the same and the overwhelming major of athletes and coaches are unconfident in the UIPM’s strategy for the sport.

"Klaus is very happy to claim solidarity and unity, but the athletes are still not happy.

"The athletes are being disrespected at every turn."