With its origins coming from a 19th century story depicting a cavalry soldier having to ride an unfamiliar horse, fight enemies with a sword, shoot, swim and run to deliver a message, the modern pentathlon consists of all five events from the story. Fencing, swimming, and horseback riding determine the order in which athletes run in the final combined laser shooting and running portions of the competition.
To begin, athletes compete against all other competitors in a round-robin format, taking part in one-minute fencing matches and accumulating points along the way to determine their ranking. On the second day of the competition, athletes are matched based on their scores from the initial day and face each other in 30-second elimination matches. Each win adds a point to their scores from the ranking day. In swimming, athletes swim a 200-meter freestyle and points are scored based on their times. For horseback riding, athletes ride on an unfamiliar horse that they are randomly paired with just 20 minutes before their ride and ride a show-jumping course. In the final laser run, athletes run four 800-meter laps, shooting five targets with a laser gun from a distance of 10 meters within 50 seconds before each lap. The leader in points is given a one-second headstart for every point they have over second place and so on based on their rankings. The first person to cross the finish line is the winner.
Modern pentathlon will be held from Aug. 5 to 7.
Venue and access information
The fencing ranking round will take place at Musashino Forest Sport Plaza, a venue built close to Tokyo Stadium and will serve as a multipurpose sports venue after the Olympics. It has a capacity of 7,200 and is five minutes from Tobitakyu Station on the Keio Line or six minutes from Josujo on Keio Bus 91 from Chofu, Musashi-koganei Station. The other three events will take place at Tokyo Stadium, which has a capacity of 48,000 and is five minutes from Tobitakyu Station on the Keio Line or six minutes from Josujo on Keio Bus Mu 91from Chofu, Musashi-koganei Station.