Rudolph rides to the top

August 16, 2018   ·   0 Comments


A hometown talent found his way near the top of the podium at last week’s Modern Pentathlon National Games, held between Orangeville, Caledon, and Mono.

Chris Rudolph of Orangeville earned himself a second-place position in the annual games, in the senior men’s category.

A longtime member of the Canadian Pony Club, Rudolph’s strengths shone through in the first of five events on August 3 at the Silver Fox Equine Club in Mono, where he took second place.

A score of 286, including zero time faults and a fourteen-point cut for riding faults, landed Rudolph in silver position in the riding portion of the games.

Other events were held at the Alder Arena Pool in Orangeville, as well as the Amaranth Town Hall, Orangeville Christian School, and Orangeville Agricultural Society Event Centre.

A feat of physicality and endurance, modern pentathlon consists of five events, usually conducted over a single day: fencing (épée), swimming (200 metres freestyle), equestrian (show jumping) and the final two sports which are combined — laser pistol target shooting alternating with running.

Athletes earn points in the first three events (fencing, swimming, and equestrian), after which their total point differentials are converted into time handicaps to determine the start order for the combined running/shooting segment. In this final leg, athletes shoot at targets with laser pistols in four series separated by 800 metre runs in an exciting chase. The first athlete across the finish line wins.

For Rudolph, this means a grueling training schedule of six days a week, spending three to four hours a day across two or three sports.

It is equestrian where Rudolph feels he most excels.

“Coming from Pony Club, riding has always been my largest advantage,” said Rudolph. “Years of experience in Equestrian eventing have prepared me for a broad array of challenges that courses pose.”

Yet it was the fencing portion of the event where he found himself in the top position, a full 24-points ahead of the second-place Ontario competitor, landing Rudolph second overall among competitors after a pair of second-place finishes in swimming and combined.

With aspirations of reaching the World Cup level, a podium finish at the Nationals is a step in the right direction for the 21-year old, who said being an athlete “has allowed (me) to travel and meet incredible people.”

“All of my friends and coaches from the sport are incredible and inspiring people who have enriched my life.”

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