Czech Ski Association organized yesterday pre-season press conference inviting the whole Cross-Country team including the biggest star, Lukas Bauer. FIS Cross-Country news talked to Lukas Bauer about upcoming season.
FIS Cross-Country News: Lukas, how was your preparation in summer?
Lukas Bauer: Everything went very well. I am satisfied with the preparation. We have been working on speed and explosiveness so that I become more competitive in sprints for bonus points and can react to attacks in mass start races.
You introduced special training features to improve your sprinting skills, you will become a sprinter?
Of course I will not become a sprinter. What we trained was more about paying attention what is going on in the race. For example in the group of four we carried out 50 m sprints where we had to be focused all the time as nobody knew when an attack would come. My goal for this kind of training is to be able to work with a change of pace in mass start races where I cannot always ski in my own rhythm. Quite often you have to move fast from the middle of the start field in front.
Do you want to fight with Petter Northug in the finish?
Well, all know the basic rule about Petter. It is better to avoid fighting with him in the final stretch. I was not gifted with this sort of explosiveness and I am afraid that training cannot do anything about that.
What are your plans for upcoming weeks?
On November 4 we pack and fly to Finland to Muonio, where we will stay till November 18. Then the whole team moves to Gällivare for the World Cup opener.
How will you training in Finland look like?
I assume first week will be more focused on volume. I look forward to skiing in the woods. On the glacier you cannot feel the speed as on the open space you feel slow. This final preparation will be very important, as it will be for the first time this season on natural snow. Another important point is that when you train at home you are quite often distracted by other inputs but close to the polar circle I can fully focus on skiing.
Do you plan special training camps during the season?
That is the question more on my coach, but in general after the Word Cup kicks off I don't plan to go to any training camp. I will skip Düsseldorf and train at home. After Otepää we plan to go to Val Senales for high altitude training and then we will move to Sweden where we stay until World Champs.
What about your goals for upcoming winter?
Of course the biggest highlight and my first priority is World Championships in Oslo. My second goal is Tour de Ski.
Do you think you can repeat the relay success from Whistler in Oslo?
It is always difficult to repeat a success. In Whistler all parts of the puzzle came together and we were very lucky and took the medal. It can happen again. In general our relay should normally be placed in top 6. Then everything can happen.
If you had to choose between medal from the World Champs and overall victory in Tour de Ski. What would you go for?
Tour de Ski! The feeling of standing on the top of Alpe Cermis is something special. It would be wonderful if I could do it again but it will be extremely difficult. I would like to be top 3.
What is so special about Tour de Ski?
As I said before, from the first time I took part in it, it has gone under my skin. You have to be in good shape all the ten days. One really bad result can kill your chances and destroy everything. Tour de Ski is hated and loved at the same time.