Experience personified: Haavard Klemetsen
With his 35 years, Norwegian team veteran Haavard Klemetsen has definitely seen his fair share of ups and downs and changes in his discipline. Rising to his best shape ever so far in the last winter, the Sami with the quick temper shares his views and wishes for the past and present of Nordic Combined in this week's "Experience personified".
What would you says is the main difference between Nordic Combined when you started with it and Nordic Combined as it is today?
I would say the equipment we use. In addition to that, the new jumping hills increasingly have the same profile everywhere and I also have to say that the average cross country level in the World Cup field that has increased a lot the last five to six years.
How do you view the development of the sport these days, especially also in regards to Ladies Nordic Combined?
I would say that we are on a good track right now but at the same time I think we have to also be even more hungry for development if we want our sport to keep getting more attention in the future. It has to be exciting and easy to understand for people who are not over averagely interested in our sport.
I also want to welcome the ladies to our sport, it will hopefully make our fantastic sport even more complete and exiting in the future! We have all seen how well the ladies did it in special jumping - there is no reason we we can't have the same development in Nordic Combined.
If you had one wish for the future of Nordic Combined, what would it be?
I have many wishes on behalf of our fantastic sport, but if I have to select only one, I think it would be to have a big event like the Four Hills Tournament or the Tour the Ski that can get more attention from the media and be an exciting extra motivation for the athletes through a long training season. We especially need this the years we have no Championships or Olympics! The TRIPLE in Seefeld was a good start last season, but I think we need to dare to think even bigger to get the attention we deserve!
Something you've always wanted to say in an interview?
Yes, definitely! I have always wanted to say: I am the biggest talent and the best ever Nordic Combined athlete that is ever gonna live on this planet! (laughs) Or maybe just take a joik (that's a Sami song) and forget about mission impossible! (laughs)
Do you have any plans for after your active career?
I would certainly like to have an exciting and meaningful job (maybe as a coach), be an important part of a happy family and otherwise just breathing and live my life to the fullest! I also want to be proud of what I have accomplished so far, looking forward for new challenges and hopefully continue to develop myself as much as I have done through a long, exciting and bumpy Nordic Combined career!
Haavard Klemetsen Facts:
Favourite venue: If I have to select one venue I especially like, I think I go for Holmenkollen. The view is really nice and everything is closely together at one place. But it could also easily be Sapporo or Oberstdorf or Kuusamo as well. They are all nice places to compete! (laughs)
Favourite format: That's easy to say, I just love the two jumps and 15 km, our old format that I still think is the best one. It is the format that can create big changes and chances throughout the competition.
First World Cup start: 01.01.2003 in Oberhof, GER
First World Cup podium: 31.12.2011 in Lillehammher (NOR)
World Cup starts: 169
World Cup podiums: 5
World Cup victories: 1
World Championship podiums: 4
Olympic gold medals: 1