Interview with Axel Teichmann (GER)
There are times when success and failure alternate on an hourly basis. In the case of Axel Teichmann, this time difference was just fractions of a second. At the Prague city sprint, Teichmann finished 35th and did not qualify for the finals. Had he been just one second faster in the qualification, Teichmann had made the quarterfinals, along with the chance for winning precious bonus seconds and the opportunity to fight for better ranks. All of that could have meant a better placing in the current overall rankings. But Teichmann does not count the ‘ifs'.
Are you disappointed with the Prague results?
Of course I expected more but the field - and that was clear beforehand - was very tight and I have to accept that it was not enough. It is a pity but not the end of the world.
Have you analyzed why it was not enough?
I was too slow! It was definitely not due to the conditions. The course was much better prepared than last year. And the transition from Oberhof to Prague went without problems, I slept long enough etc. Blaming the circumstances would just be looking for excuses.
How do you view your overall chances at the Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski?
At the moment I am in tenth position but there is still a lot ahead of us. In Nove Mesto we will have a 15 km individual start race in classical technique, a competition where I am strong. In Davos I had a great race and I am in a good shape - so I can attack. And we have other good athletes, too, such as Tobias Angerer. But Dario Cologna is very strong and a great all-rounder. And he is in the lead which means that he is probably the favorite for the overall victory.
Source: Viessmann Media Service
Interview with Jean Marc Gaillard (FRA)
Jean Marc Gaillard, you have started quite well into the third edition of the Viessmann FIS Tour de Ski performance by Craft Sportswear, being in the third overall rank so far. What is your personal summary from the first three Stages?
As you said, I had a very good first part of the Tour de Ski. It was important for me to stay up front, not far from the current Tour de Ski leader. According to this I have achieved my goal. My 3th place in the sprint was a big surprise! I never expected a podium in a sprint race. I'm in a good shape and feel confident.
What do you think will be the key for you for the races in Nove Mesto?
The 15km individual start race will be for me the most important for me because it will be an individual start race. The goal is to lose as little time as possible on the leaders. The sprint race will be important as well, but I don't really know what to expect from that race.
What is your aim for the overall Tour de Ski now?
My goal is first to stay in the top 10 until the start of the Final Climb. Then everything will be possible and a lot of thing could change during this last Stage. There I will do my best to "eat" the guys in front of me ;-)
Final question: How do you, as an athlete, celebrate the New Year's evening on the Tour de Ski?
Not with my family :-). We will probably go to a New Year's party but I will be in bed quite early. We will have a sprint competition on January 1st and then a long transfer to Val die Fiemme...