“Not to move,” says the German, “this is what we would still like to achieve for Rio.”
After winning reelection over the weekend in Buenos Aires, he will be the man to lead modern pentathlon through the 2016 Games.
At present, Rio is planning a riding stadium to stage equestrian, running and shooting events. An adjacent pool will host the swimming, and a nearby sport complex will house fencing.
The close proximity of the five disciplines is a definite step up from London, where almost 10km separated fencing and swimming in the Olympic Park from the finale at Greenwich Park.
Schormann, however, is determined to deliver a “modern pentathlon stadium” in place of the proposed Deodoro Modern Pentathlon Park.
“We have this in other competitions already,” he says. “In the stadium where we have the riding, we have also a temporary pool, so you have the swimming, you have the equestrian and you have the run/shoot all built up in front of the spectators, and now we want to have the fencing as well.”
How exactly that would work is not yet decided.
To allow time for venue transitions, Schormann suggests, fencers could fight a day before or even early the morning of the competition in order to keep the audience in one place.
A working session with UIPM’s technical and coaching committees scheduled for Nov. 14 and 15 in Frankfurt, Germany will work out additional details.
Modern pentathlon already approved in principle a new fencing system at the Congress in Buenos Aires, and now the UIPM will test different options in competition before making a decision next November.
In the meantime, Schormann says he will travel to Rio "very soon” to make his case.
“Again, it’s more money and more attraction for the spectators when you have all the five disciplines in the stadium in front of the spectators,” he tellsATR, adding that Tokyo is already a convert and will present a single modern pentathlon stadium as part of its bid for the 2020 Olympics.
Also in Buenos Aires, the UIPM tweaked the new running and shooting finale following its Olympic debut at London 2012.
Schormann says with pride that he heard not a single negative remark at the Congress about either the combined event or the introduction of laser pistols.
Everyone agreed they were strong additions to modern pentathlon, he insists, but not yet perfect in their execution.
“There are a lot of athletes who are very strong in shooting, and they thought that the benefit is given too much to the runner,” he tells ATR.
As a result, future competitions will feature four laps of 800m interspersed with four shooting series instead of three 1,000m laps and three shooting series. Also, athletes will only get 50 seconds to secure the necessary five green lights during shooting, down from 70 seconds in London.
“We want to have a more fair balance, and that’s important,” says Schormann.
“Someone is more a fencer, and another is more a swimmer, so we always have to bring a balance.”
After a full 15 years with Joel Bouzou as his secretary general, Schormann must find a new No. 2 following the Frenchman’s resignation in Buenos Aires.
“Mr. Bouzou is so deeply involved as president for the World Olympians Association and Peace and Sport,” says Schormann.
“There was already in the past not enough time to serve as secretary general, and so therefore he made the correct decision.”
Following a proposal from France, the former world champion and Olympic bronze medalist Bouzou was elected one of UIPM’s five vice presidents.
His successor as secretary general will be chosen Nov. 17 or 18 in Frankfurt at a meeting of the UIPM Executive Board.
Asked who he will propose, Schormann jokes that’s between him and his nominee.
London 2012 marked the 100th anniversary of modern pentathlon on the program of the Summer Olympics.
Asked how confident he is the sport will remain in the Games for another 100 years, Scormann says “we made a toast for that” in Buenos Aires.
“We are created for the Olympic Movement by Pierre de Coubertin, and we rearranged our sport in the modern spirit based on technology and understanding what kids like,” he tells ATR.
“We are very much convinced that we are the right sport, that we have made the right decisions always in the right moment requested by the IOC president and requested by the IOC sports department. We fulfilled in time the task, and we go on, not stopping. We are always going to develop, never to stop, for the benefit of the athletes, for the benefit of the sport, for the benefit of the Olympic Movement.”