Ladies in the Spotlight: Simona Weinlichova (CZE)
With a first-ever FIS Youth Cup tour including overall rankings coming up in the next winter, Ladies’ Nordic Combined is on the verge to take the next step. Before the first event in Vuokatti, Finland takes place in early August, fis-ski.com will introduce some of Nordic Combined’s female hopefuls. First up is 16-year-old Simona Weinlichova from the Czech Republic.
Can you tell us a little bit how your career as an athlete has gone so far? When did you start skiing and jumping?
Simona Weinlichova: I have jumped for 6 years now. The beginnings were very hard. I was already older then the children who jumped on the smaller training hills and thought it was very sad. So I started to try and jump on the biggest hill and that’s when I began to flourish more ad more. I won a lot of competitions but in all fairness also due for the reason that we were only very few girls, probably seven in my category at most.
When I ski in competitions, I am often quite alone in my category. The older girls don't cross-country ski much, they get into the ski jumping and stop with the skiing. But somehow I’ve stayed with it and so I got to Nordic Combined.
Do you have any favourite athletes or role models in the Nordic Combined World Cup?
Weinlichova: I really like Johannes Rydzek. He is amazing athlete! When I saw him first, I knew that would be my favourite.
How is the situation for ladies in Nordic Combined in your country at the moment? Did you have the opportunity to train both, cross-country and ski jumping until now?
Weinlichova: Although this is difficult, it is achievable. I go to the sports gymnasium and I have two trainers, one for Ski Jumping and second for Nordic Combined. Everyone is trying to help me as much as possible to succeed but I still have some work to do.
In the upcoming winter, we will have an overall ranking for Ladies in Nordic Combined for the first time ever in the history of the discipline. Are you excited about the development?
Weinlichova: Actually I'm very excited to be involved in that kind of historical event in the sport. I'm really looking forward to the development of Ladies Nordic Combined. It will be a big thing.
With Vuokatti, Oberstdorf, Harrachov and Trondheim, there are four great venues of the calendar. Do you already know if you’re going to take part in all four events? Which one are you looking forward to most?
Weinlichova: So far, we have not discussed the exact plans with the coach, but I will definitely be going to Oberstdorf in September. I am very much looking forward to it! It was the first big competition in Nordic Combined which I participated in and I really liked it there. Actually, I would be looking forward to go to all the places. Vuokatti for example is completely new for me, I’ve never been there.
What are your goals for the upcoming season?
Weinlichova: I want to start to get better on roller skis. It will be hard but I think that with a little patience, it can work. If I managed to achieve better results in the competitions as well, it would be a very happy moment for me and my mom. (laughs)