Our next station in our international trip is Finland: and we manage to make an interview with a biathlete who can be maybe the „new Kaisa” among the men: Ahti Toivanen!
BFH: Ahti, please tell us a small summary of the season! Your best WC
position is your career was in this winter (33rd place, Östersund
sprint) and you qualified yourself several times for the pursuit.
Altogether are you happy with these results?
Ahti: Yes start of
season was good but then it went downhill.. In oberhof i was sick and it
too time to recover even thought it was ok in ruhpolding and antholtz.
WCH then was catastrophe for our team! didn't find skies/grinding/waxing
for skies and it was horrible result even though i had the best feeling
in my body the whole season. Rest of season i was pretty much sick
-> no any results
BFH: Two years ago in the Junior WCH in Nove Mesto you were almost on the
podium – when do you think a same result is possible for you in the
World Cup races?
Ahti: Nowadays races are thought and many can do
well so it needs very good day to get top.. But I think if everything
goes well and stay healthy maybe next season after olympics some
podium.. but you never know what happens in biathlon so sometimes with
luck you can get podium
BFH: In the next season there is Sochi and the Olympic Games, then in 2015
home World Championships in Kontiolahti. Which is more important for
Ahti: Maybe Sochi comes little bit too early for me but
ofcourse i want make good results there. Kontiolahti isn't so hard track
and quite small margins in skiing time so i think can make even top
results there Been training in kontiolahti many years and many friends come to watch so it would be super to do good results there..
BFH: Please tell us a few words about the biathlon’s popularity in Finland!
Still behind ice-hockey, ski jumping and cross country I guess…
Ahti: It has been increasing now after Kaisa's success but quite minor
still... Even in joensuu most attention goes to icehockey, basketball
and floorball... But now atleast people now what biathlon is !!
BFH: What are you doing at the moment? Did your preparation start for the new season?
Ahti: Yes, preparation for next season has started with the first A-team camp.
BFH: Finally, we would like to ask you send some special message to the
Hungarian biathlon fans! We want to tell everybody that this is the most
beautiful sport in the world, do you agree?
Ahti: Yes, biathlon is very demanding sport but very fun The athmosphere is amasing in competitions, thanks to all (crazy) fans!! So keep it up and hope we make it even bigger sport
Thank you for your answers and we wish you good preparation for the Olympic season!
(In the photo we are together with Ahti, Jarkko and Mari in Bled.)