Daniela Merighetti: "I want to be at my best in Sochi"
Italian skier Daniela Merighetti, who was born in Brescia 5 July 1981, has been a member of the Italian team since 2000. Although she is an all-round skier she achieves her best results in the speed ones. It hasn’t always been that way as back in 2003 she achieved her first podium in GS, a second place in Are, Sweden.
Since then Merighetti stood on the podium three more times, winning her first and so far only race in January 2012, when she decided to race the downhill on the famous Tofana in Cortina d'Ampezzo despite a broken thumb. Among her successes she counts a gold medal in the giant slalom at the Military World Ski Championships in 2005 and seven Italian championship titles between 2005 and 2013 downhill.
In an interview with skiweltcup.tv Merighetti about how she got nicknamd "Dada", last season, her relationship with now retired teammate Nicole Gius, the new material and the upcoming Olympic Winter Games in Sochi next February.
Q: Daniela, almost everyone calls you "Dada", how did you get your nickname?
A: I got the nickname from one of my cousins, who as a child was unable to pronounce my whole name.
Q: You ski all five disciplines but which one is your favorite event?
A: Downhill for sure, but I really like slalom too… even if I was born as giant slalom skier as I landed on the podium in Ǻre in 2003.
Q: The World Cup 2012/13 season came to an end recently. What is your personal assessment?
A: To be honest, I expected more, especially in super-G. On a positive note, I always skied as well as I could and with the aim to win. I always gave 100 percent. If you ski at such a level you can easily make mistakes. In recent seasons unfortunately I wasn’t able to enjoy ta top 10 finish in super G.
Q: Were you able to you, especially in the technical disciplines, adapt reasonably well to the new materials?
A: For me, the change didn’t only come in giant slalom. In the speed disciplines I immediately found the right feeling.
Q: Your teammate Nicole Gius ended her active career. Do you miss her and what was the relationship with her?
A: I certainly miss Nicole because we were always friends. When I came to the A-team, she was the athlete I looked up to the most. She was a great role model to follow. We raced together often in the technical disciplines.
Q: Which special training methods will you apply in the upcoming summer?
A: I will to adapt my skiing to the new material even more. In the recent years I have placed great emphasis on the gliding, this winter I will deal mainly with the technical aspects.
Q: Is there a superstition that distinguishes you from other athletes?
A: There are no spells, but I always do a special thing when my service man puts my skis to my feet.
Q: What does Daniela Merighetti do when she is not skiing? What hobbies do you have?
A: I like volleyball and when possible I play it there are many beach volleyball courts in my hometown and we often play a game in the evening. For the last three years I have been living on my own so I have relatively little free time, between workouts and cleaning the house.
Q: What are your final goals for the upcoming Olympic season, and what's your impression of the slopes in Sochi?
A: I like the slope in Sochi very much and my goal is to get the best race of the season at the Olympics in Russia. I would like for my form to be at its highest and that everything works as it should. Moreover, I would like to deliver good results in the World Cup. Also, I want to improve myself in the giant slalom and earn my spot among the top 15th.
Interview for skiweltcup.tv by Andreas Raffeiner