The Continental Cup in Trondheim mid-September was the last international competition that Andreas Kofler took part in. In an interview, he now spoke about the reasons for the break from competitions.
The 33-year-old Austrian suffers from an autoimmune disease. "This fall was the most difficult time for me. Now I focus on getting healthy again and solve my "energy problem". I gave my all in the preparation for the season, but I got weaker and weaker. My body is fighting its own cells. At first, I didn't want to accept that, but at some point, I had to deal with it. It's a physical thing, I don't have any mental problems. On the contrary. I'm motivated and I want to make progress in jumping. But I notice that something about my energy balance is not right. I had to reduce training", Andreas Kofler said in an interview with the newspaper "Tiroler Tageszeitung".
Already last winter, the 2010 4-Hills-Tournament winner realized that something was wrong, but the reason for his problems was not diagnosed before this fall. Now the veteran has to slow down, something that is, of course, especially hard when a season with so many highlights is coming up.
"I have set goals for myself. Now I have to be aware of the fact that I need my body to achieve them. Being ready mentally is not enough. in fall you prepare yourself for the season opener and highlights like the 4-Hills-Tournament and the Olympics and then you are not competitive. I relied on my body for 15 years and now it is giving me a sign."
Right now it's still not clear when Andreas Kofler will be able to compete again. On Sunday he will travel to Lillehammer to train there together with Michael Hayboeck and Markus Schiffner. The long-term goal of the Tyrolean is to participate in the World Championships at home in Seefeld 2019. "This would be a nice end of my career. You can make a lot of plans, but often things turn out differently to what you have hoped for."