Tantalizer 464: Pentathlon
3 January 2018
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From New Scientist #1015, 26th August 1976 [link]
The Pentathlon at the West Wessex Olympics is a Monday-to-Friday affair with a different event each day. Entrants specify which day they would prefer for which event — a silly idea, as they never agree.
This time, for instance, there were five entrants. Each handed in a list of events in his preferred order. No day was picked for any event by more than two entrants. Swimming was the only event which no one wished to tackle on the Monday. For the Tuesday there was just one request for horse-riding, just one for fencing and just one for swimming. For the Wednesday there were two bids for cross-country running and two for pistol-shooting. For the Thursday two entrants proposed cross-country and just one wanted horse-riding. The Friday was more sought after for swimming than for fencing.
Still, the organisers did manage to find an order which gave each entrant exactly two events on the day he had wanted them.
In what order were the events held?
I don’t think there is a solution to this puzzle as it is presented. Instead I would change the condition for Thursday to:
For Thursday two entrants proposed cross-country and just one wanted fencing.
This allows you to arrive at the published answer.