The flagship competition of the 2020 UIPM Modern Pentathlon season has been moved due to travel restrictions imposed following the Coronavirus outbreak in China.
The city of Xiamen (CHN), due to host the UIPM 2020 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships from May 25-31, has accepted an offer from UIPM to stage the 2022 instalment instead. Minsk (BLR) had already been confirmed as host city in 2021.
The UIPM 2020 Pentathlon World Championships will now take place on the same dates in Cancún (MEX), ensuring that all the major competitions of the season will be held at sea level and providing a strong contingency solution for the final Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games qualification event.
Cancún (MEX) will not host the UIPM 2020 Laser Run World Championships, which would have been combined with the Pentathlon World Championships in Xiamen (CHN).
Instead, the sixth running of the event will be combined with the UIPM 2020 Biathle/Triathle World Championships in Weiden (GER) in August.
There are currently no plans to relocate the UIPM 2020 Congress and Annual Awards, which are scheduled to take place in Xiamen (CHN) from November 13-15. UIPM will monitor the travel situation closely and discuss the matter with all relevant authorities in the coming months.
UIPM President Dr Klaus Schormann said: “The past few weeks have been a difficult time for all involved in international sport, and our movement is no exception. We are very sorry that the Coronavirus outbreak has caused so much disruption and left us with no choice but to move our flagship annual competition away from China.
“We are, however, delighted that the City Government of Xiamen has agreed to postpone what I am certain will be an exemplary UIPM Pentathlon World Championships until the year 2022.
“We are equally grateful to our friends in Mexico, who have come to the aid of our global community with a wonderfully supportive gesture. In 2018 we enjoyed an historic UIPM Pentathlon World Championships in Mexico City, where the Pentathlon Stadium concept was brought to life, and now we are all looking forward to an exciting UIPM 2020 Pentathlon World Championships in Cancún.
“It was very important to provide our athletes with a World Championships at sea level, matching the conditions they will experience during the Olympic Summer Games Tokyo 2020. We are also grateful to the organisers of the UIPM 2020 Biathle/Triathle World Championships for agreeing to incorporate the Laser Run World Championships.
“I am pleased now that we can provide these assurances to our global community, minimising disruption to athletes, coaches, support teams and all other stakeholders during the most important year of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic cycle.”
Guo Guirong, Deputy Mayor of the City Government of Xiamen, said: “We are thankful for the support and trust of UIPM and the international Pentathlon community in Xiamen.“Due to the Coronavirus, it’s a pity that our UIPM 2020 Pentathlon and Laser Run World Championships in Xiamen, which was originally scheduled for May, needs to be postponed.
“We are confident that we will soon overcome the epidemic. In addition, Xiamen ranks first in China in terms of the effectiveness of the prevention and control of the epidemic.
“We look forward to hosting the UIPM 2020 Congress in November this year as planned. Xiamen looks forward to the arrival of UIPM friends and guests from all over the world.”
Ana Gabriela Guevara Espinosa, Mexico’s Sports Minister, added: “Mexico is proud to open its doors again to the international sports family, hosting the UIPM 2020 Pentathlon World Championships in May, prior to the Tokyo 2020 Olympics Games.
“Modern Pentathlon has always been important to Mexico and its athletes. We are looking forward to delivering another successful international event along with UIPM in the magnificent Cancún.”