Q&A Bostjan Kline
Only 7 athletes could celebrate their first podium this season, and Slovenia’s Bostjan Kline is one of them. 2nd in Garmisch-Partenkirchen (DH) and 2nd in Hinterstoder (SG), the speed specialist is able to lay down very strong and clean runs, so keep him on the short list, he will be a serious contender for victories next season.
It’s been a long time since St. Moritz now, and we saw on Social Media that you spent some time with your family. Were spring skiing and dryland also on the schedule, or was it all about resting and enjoying summer time?
Most of this ‘after season’ time was spent with my family. We were also testing some things with Stoeckli and did last snow camp of the season beginning of May with the team. I have to take advantage of this time when we are totally off to enjoy family time and make some bonus for upcoming season.
This year, you impressed and really made a name for yourself. You must be very proud to look back on an incredibly strong season 2015/2016. What are your feelings about it?
That’s true. I am very proud of what I did in the last season, especially because I did much more than I expected and exceeded my goals. But still, I think that i need to keep satisfaction on right level and keep grinding.
The transition between junior and elite is not always easy. You’ve been a Junior World Champ twice (DH and SG in 2011), but you struggled to score points on a regular basis when you started on the World Cup Tour. Tell us about this period.
It depends from an athlete to another, how he sees it and how he is able to adapt to the changes. Some of them don't feel the difference, but for me it was a big step (courses, rivals, cameras, ...) and a lot was going on in my head. I had to be patient. I think for me the main thing was that I had to grow a bit more as a person. That took time, and it wasn't easy, but I was patient. Also, I was lucky that we didn’t have anyone else in the team to kick me out (in Austria, someone else would have taken my spot in the team). Motivation was never a problem, the problem was to get to know myself and stay patient.
And then, something triggered. You earned your first podium spots this season. Did you see it coming? What was different on these days than on any other World Cup race?
No, for sure I didn’t see it coming. I didn’t change anything special on that day, I already felt good in training run in Garmisch and I tried to bring that confidence into the race day. In Hinterstoder I managed to transfer that feeling before the start and the feeling of skiing from Garmisch and from the trainings.
Both times, you were right behind another newcomer of the season, Aleksander Aamodt Kilde. How do you explain it? Is your way of skiing similar? What are your common strengths, and what do you have to do to beat him next time?
Yes that was a funny thing :) I think it was just a coincidence. I couldn’t say that our way of skiing is similar and also our lines are different in most cases. Maybe our common thing is the position on skies. To beat him, I think I just have to be patient and keep trying to improve every day.
You are training within a relatively small structure in the Slovenian speed team. There must be advantages and inconvenients. What is it you like the most about it, and what are you missing?
For sure there is both. I think training and working in a small team with a low budget gets you a different perspective, you have to do much more for yourself and care about things that others don’t even know. On the other hand, you are missing some rivals, some things that the team cannot afford. But our team is creative, and with some imagination we always found alternatives. I think for a sportsman with a plan and a goal, it's better that way, because you are growing with a wide angle.
Time flies and the season of the confirmation is coming up. What are your goals for 2016/17 ? What do you intend to focus on and to improve ?
I think that I have to focus on improving in every aspect of sport and skiing. That means physically, mentally, technically, … I will try to pull out the good things from last season and build on this for the upcoming ones.
What about the St. Moritz 2017? Your best result in a World Championship so far is a 30th in Schladming in 2013, but this year, a medal is possible. Is this more of an expectation? a goal? a dream?
I thing every skier is dreaming about it and trying to reach it, and it's the same for me :)