Nordic Combined season review with Lasse Ottesen
FIS Nordic Combined Race Director Lasse Ottesen took a moment to reflect on the past World Cup season: from the Nordic Combined TRIPLE to the Olympic Winter Games, it was a season full of highlights.
How would you evaluate the past season?
All in all, we are very happy with the season even though it was sometimes difficult in terms of weather and snow. Only the last competition in Falun (SWE) had to be cancelled due to dangerous wind conditions. A big thank you should be expressed to all Organisers who put huge efforts into making the events happen!
From a sporting perspective, the three highlights of the winter, the newly introduced TRIPLE in Seefeld (AUT), the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi (RUS) and the pre-World Championship test events in Falun (SWE) went very well.
Furthermore, the season’s most dominant athlete Eric Frenzel (GER) has blossomed into a real star. Besides claiming his second straight overall World Cup globe, he became Olympic champion and took the inaugural TRIPLE victory. We have also seen many old and new faces claiming podium positions. Young guns especially made their marks on the jumping hill. It goes without saying that the future of Nordic Combined is looking very promising.
Could you tell us more about the newly launched TRIPLE ?
I am happy to say that our new season highlight, the TRIPLE, was a success. After two years of intensive planning, the implementation went really well and the rules and regulations worked out as planned. We saw three exciting competition days featuring thrilling fights from the beginning to the end. Importantly, the feedback from the athletes and teams was very positive.
The long-term goal for the TRIPLE is now to increase visibility among fans, spectators and the media alike. There are no major changes foreseen concept-wise. We will give it time to grow.
How about the pre-World Championship test events in Falun?
Falun celebrated a successful comeback to the World Cup calendar after 15 years of absence. The Organisers have done an outstanding job to host our World Cup Finals. Admittedly, the wind made the situation difficult on the jumping hill which caused the cancellation of the team event. However, the Organising Committee showed good levels of preparation and commitment. With eleven months left until the World Championships, all signs point to great events next winter.
What are the major topics on the agenda for the near future?
A main topic for the FIS Meetings and the FIS Congress in June will be the development of ladies‘ Nordic Combined. It is our goal to stage the first international training camp this summer in conjunction with the FIS Summer Grand Prix. During the meetings, we will be assessing the situation of ladies‘ Nordic Combined worldwide Furthermore, small modifications to the existing rules and regulations will be made.
With regard to major title events, preparations are naturally focusing on Falun 2015, Lahti (FIN) 2017 and the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in PyeongChang (KOR).
Any final comments?
Now that the season is over, all energy will now shift towards the planning and implementation of the upcoming, hopefully even bigger and better seasons. Keep following Nordic Combined on TV, the web, facebook, twitter and all other social media channels!