Two-time SBX crystal globe winner Alessandro “Izzi” Haemmerle (AUT) took the time to answer some of our questions on his globe wins, but also about what he personally learned from the pandemic and what his goals for the upcoming season are.
One thing is clear though, he is already very much looking forward to being back in the start gate.
What did the last season and the win of the third crystal globe mean to you? Can you rank which crystal globe win was the most important to you, or are they all equally important?
I have set high goals last season and one of them was winning the globe again, reaching this high goal was really important to me as I put a lot of effort into preparation and details. If I had to choose which one was more important to me, I’d choose the first one.
First times are always more special, the whole experience is new, the flash you get is huge, people at home going crazy about it beyond imagination.
The second one was in that aspect a little bit disappointing due to the Corona virus. Everything you worked hard for, all the pressure, training, etc. - it missed the appreciation.
How did you handle the whole lockdown situation and the ongoing uncertainties of the Covid-19 pandemic after the season ended so abruptly?
It was super weird. I came straight from the hill, from winning the globe into quarantine the same evening. All in all, I think I handled the situation well, I gave myself some time off during that time, of course I wished I could have spent that time at the beach surfing instead of staying home.
After that relax phase was over, my team and I started to get creative in order to get some proper trainings in.
The situation right now is pretty difficult as the numbers are starting to rise again and we don’t know how the races will be held this upcoming season. Nevertheless, I prepare as if it was a normal season ahead of us and if something changes, we simply have to adapt, I guess.
What is your personal biggest learning that you took from the pandemic?
Not taking normal life for granted.
Going into a new season with World Championships in February, what are your main goals and focus points for the next season? Will another crystal globe be on the list of goals?
This is hard to answer. My main goal should be a World Championship medal, as this is something missing in my collection, but at the moment I feel more drawn to the “Globe Threepeat”.
World Champs and Olympics, it’s always one race, how do you prepare for that one race? I think it’s impossible to just focus on that and to deliver. I’ll just try to ride my best every race, gain a lot of points and once the World Champs are here, I’ll be in a good rhythm to go for a medal - whatever happens on that day happens.
Do you prefer seasons with a big event like World Championships or Olympic Winter Games, or do you prefer seasons where you can mainly focus on the World Cup? And why?
I prefer a season with a highlight (World Champs or Olympics), it takes a little bit pressure off the globe as there is a special bonus goal to reach during that season.
What is it that you love most about your sport?
The flow feeling, when everything comes together and you just put down a perfect run, gaining speed at every corner where you possibly can. You never know what is going to happen before you start, sometimes it’s like playing chess with only minimal time to react on your opponents moves. Outplaying my opponents with special maneuvers I played out in my head, putting them down in the course when it counts and coming through first - that’s what I love about our sport.
Haemmerle and his team already got some snowdays in at the Kaunertaler Gletscher (AUT) and obviously the Austrian is looking forward to a new and action-loaded season. And so are we!
You can find the calendar for the entire FIS Snowboard Cross World Cup season 2020/21 HERE.