Maurice Manificat in interview: Working hard, aiming high

16 July 2012 15:43
Maurice Manificat finishes in Oberhof
Maurice Manificat finishes in Oberhof -

Maurice Manificat led the French Cross-Country squad last winter as he claimed 8th place in the FIS Cross-Country Overall World Cup as the best French. FIS Cross-Country News talked to the young talented athlete of the Agy Ski Club about the summer training and plans for the winter.

FIS Cross-Country News: Maurice, how has been you spring/summer training so far? 

Maurice Manificat: My training has been good so far in spring and summer. Contrary to past years, I took a long time off to recover from the endurance sport, the whole April actually, as I was sick at the end of the season. This time did me really well both physically and mentally. In May I resumed training with soft and progressive workouts on mountain bike, fitness, running then roller skiing.

At the same time I attended the Grenoble University to continue my master degree in biology. I had lot of work between the end of April and the end of May but it was very interesting and I passed all the exams. I also took part in mountain running races. I really like them and there is a good opportunity to meet different people. Since June, I am fully in the training until September, when I have to go to University for another session.

We have also had very good training camps with the French ski team. At first we worked on snow in La Rosière and Ramsau, then we went to Norway mainly for roller skiing. So far, my body has responded very well to the training load and I feel I have managed the trainings better than before.

FIS Cross-Country News:  You also spent some training time with your club. How was the training camp? Are there any talented youngsters? 

M.M.: I am a lot on the road so I cannot spend much time with my club so this camp was a great opportunity to spend some time with them. For sure there are some talented youngsters but the way is long and hard to go to the top, I’ve tried to explain them that they have to work hard, aim high and initially think of the work before the result.

FIS Cross-Country News: You are now in Norway again. What is the training plan? 

M.M.: Norway’s landscape and profile is very different to the home countryside. There are perfect conditions for roller skiing so we will spend most of the time skiing. On the contrary there are less opportunities for cross running than in France as there are not that many mountain tracks. This time in Norway we are with the French biathlon team and we will share some trainings together. Maybe we will make a common video. And then there is the Blink Festival, but training is the priority.

FIS Cross-Country News: What else is on your training schedule for the summer?

M.M.: After Norway, I will go to southwest of France where my grandparents live. I can train there in a different landscape, in low altitude, easier than at home. I plan to go running in the sand at ocean’s coast one or two days. August will be pretty busy with training camps of the French ski team, roller skiing nationals at end of August. In September I will back on snow in Oberhof.

FIS Cross-Country News: What do you like and hate about summer training?

M.M.: In the summer, I like sun for sure, mainly because I can train in such a beautiful landscape in the mountains. I like to photograph so I often take my camera during training to take pictures and share them on Twitter. I like roller skiing and swimming. In the summer, I always remember the holiday time when I was younger. On the other hand I hate when it's too hot. It's very hard to train in 35°C therefore Norway is nice when it's too hot in France :-)

FIS Cross-Country News: Next season there are two highlights in Val di Fiemme; FIS Tour de Ski and World Championships. What’s your preference?

M.M.: At this time, I'm looking forward more to the World Champs, especially 15km free. FIS Tour de Ski is also a great event and I’ve been thinking about it too. FIS World Cup is coming again to La Clusaz next season and even though it takes place after the Tour I hope the French team will be strong.