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Recent FIS News
Below you will find a listing of recent FIS News
FIS Nordic Combined Coordinator Lasse Ottesen
Lasse Ottesen joined FIS on 1st May as Nordic Combined (NC) Coordinator, a new position designed to strengthen the NC team. The positive and talkative Norwegian took a moment to share his initial experiences with the FIS Newsflash, including how he would like to see the discipline develop in the coming years, and to reveal a few unknown facts about himself.
"There is no doubt I will need some time to adjust and understand how FIS works, but I have been warmly welcomed and the feedback I have received from the Nordic Combined family so far has been positive," said Lasse when asked to summarize his first 75 days.
Together with FIS Race Director, Uli Wehling, Lasse will form the main team for the discipline in the coming season. "We have spent quite some time to coordinate our two roles in order to see who is doing what. With Uli running the show for several years, we needed to make sure we have excellent team work and prevent us from doubling up." Working on the calendars for the 2012/13 and 2013/14 seasons, Lasse is beginning to see the big picture. "Getting to know all the parties is very important to me, as is good communication among FIS, the OCs and the NSAs/teams. By working together from the beginning allows us to get to know each other and it will be easier to meet everyone's expectations."
As a former ski jumper, Assistant Sports Director at Oslo 2011, and head coach for the US Nordic Combined team, Lasse has a broad background which he believes will help him do a good job in his new position. "Having been both an athlete and coach I believe I can play a key facilitating role." Lasse is convinced it is possible to lift the discipline to new heights: "It's not about creating a new discipline; it's about renewing what we have and making it more interesting for all parties."
There is one thing Lasse would love to see, however, and that is a Nordic Combined superstar. "Imagine having a Morgenstern or Northug in our discipline. These guys are much more than athletes, they are role models - media loves them, and they help attract more fans. Right now, we do not have such a personality in NC, which I would love to see change". Creating a superstar again requires communication and team work, but Lasse is positive this is achievable if all share the same vision.
"The right direction is definitely upwards," he says. "If you look at the World Cup calendar we have doubled the number of competitions compared to last year. Our COC calendar is full, and we had to restrict our athlete quotas for this season, which is a positive development." With small steps NC is returning to its position of its heydays in the 1990's.
With the so-called penalty race introduced on a trial basis next season and also to be tested during the FIS Grand Prix this summer, Lasse is positive about the new concept. By keeping it simple and not changing the "soul" of the discipline, the concept has potential. "The media, especially TV, have been highly positive concerning the inclusion of the penalty race. By adding this format, we will have a more tactical race for the athletes and the excitement is bound to increase as it is not set who will win before the very end."
Currently enjoying a week' holidays with his family in Switzerland, combined with some office duties and inspections, Lasse would like to find some time to play his favorite summer sport: golf. The Norwegian seems to have more hidden talents, though, revealing 5 things we did not know about him:
1. he can still fit into his jumping suit
Contributed by Sofie Torlei Olsen
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