September 28, 2022

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A clear message: - Then we failed

A clear message: – Then we failed

SOGNEFJELLET (Dagbladet): Dark, rainy clouds threaten Wednesday morning over Sognefjellet, but between the clouds, some sun rays make their way through the mountaintops and illuminate them.

Uncertain weather is a good picture of the situation in Norwegian women’s cross-country skiing at the moment (exactly now). They’ve had to endure a lot of bleak headlines during and after the season. Behind Therese Johaug there were a few who gave their performances at the Olympics, and the discussion about the future and changing Norwegian generations, which Dagbladet already sounded the alarm in 2018And the Reached new heights.

After this year’s season, distance queen Therese Johaug and Norway’s best sprinter Maiken Kaspersen Vala both took part. Ingefeld Flugstad-Ostberg was also not offered a place for the national team.

Thus, three winning cards with 122 victories in the World Cup and a set of championship medals were distributed among them away from the team that also lost coaches Ole Morten Iversen and Ola Vejn Hatstad.

GO: Coaches Ole Morten Iversen (right) and Ola Vigen Hattestad. Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB
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the couple

But here at Sognefjellet, the atmosphere, as radiant as it is, is positive and sheds a ray of hope. The Dutch theologian Erasmus was also quoted as saying: Light the candles and the darkness will disappear by itself.

It probably isn’t that easy on new coach duo Sjur Ole Svarstad and Stig Rune Kveen, who were hired this spring. There are several keys to tuning in for the Norwegian ladies cross-country skiing to get back to the level we spoiled during the heyday of Therese Juhoge and Marit Björgen.

In other words, Svarstad, who worked with the aforementioned duo, has an insight into the Norwegian Golden Age and the difference from then and now. But the 40-year-old wouldn’t spend much time on word challenges and dwell on the stars who got lost:

Challenge and challenges…

It is now possible that for the first time in quite a while we can count on winning the World Cup almost every weekend. It’s actually a long time since we haven’t had it. Svarstad explains that this can be called a challenge, because we messed up so much.

Follow up: Sjur Ole Svarstad works to identify athletes for the elite team and the national team recruited.  Photo: Bjørn Langsem

Follow up: Sjur Ole Svarstad works to identify athletes for the elite team and the national team recruited. Photo: Bjørn Langsem
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continue:

– We know the standing of the team, and for coaches and athletes, regardless of development is the motivation to work with them. That should be our focus. So I hope everyone at home stays on the couch, the media, and everyone else is expecting, hoping, and believing in the podiums. We try to set the list high and get to it.

big goals

Svarstad explains that he and Stig Rune Kveen have big goals for the national team this year and in the years to come:

– Despite lining up the best, we have eleven athletes at a very high level. If we go one step further, it could be more exciting than some frightening. Nor do we want to move around without fighting for seats.

Stig Ron Kevin worked closely with the greatest Norwegian cross-country coach – Peter Northog. Few know much about the causes of successes and depressions.

He will now work to ensure that Norwegian women can fight with foreign competitors this winter as well.

DRIVING NORTH: Now Stig Ron-Kevin is in charge of the women's national cross-country skiing team.  Photo: Thomas Rasmus Skaug / Dagbladet

DRIVING NORTH: Now Stig Ron-Kevin is in charge of the women’s national cross-country skiing team. Photo: Thomas Rasmus Skaug / Dagbladet
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There is no doubt that the Trøndelag man sacrificed himself for his new team in the early days. He came limping in the interview with DB, and is somewhat skeptical when he sees us sitting on the beach chair.

“Should I go down in it,” says Kevin, laughing dejectedly at his body. He says he thundered with a witch’s bullet when he tested the sprint movement women have to ask in training.

So the effort can’t be talked about, and Kevin has confidence in the Norwegian team in the future:

Of course, it’s boring to lose Maiken (Caspersen Falla) and Therese (Johaug), but at the same time there is a great mix of ambitious and experienced runners on the team. Kevin says I am looking positively to the future.

Away: Maiken Caspersen Falla (left) and Therese Juhaug (three from left) joined the national team ahead of this year's season.  Here with Heidi Wing (right) and Astrid Orenholdt Jacobsen.  Photo: NTB

Away: Maiken Caspersen Falla (left) and Therese Juhaug (three from left) joined the national team ahead of this year’s season. Here with Heidi Wing (right) and Astrid Orenholdt Jacobsen. Photo: NTB
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It also promises that the new coaching duo will spend more time following what’s growing in Norwegian cross-country skiing:

– We must be curious and communicate with the recruits and those below. Kevin explains that there are a lot of exciting happenings, and we should follow up and contribute if there is something we can contribute to.

new philosophy

While the men’s Norwegian national team is divided into two teams (enemy and distance), the Norwegian women have always had one national team. When Ola Vigen Hattestad came, he was given the main responsibility for the runners, but the Norwegian women would not have this “split” in the group in the future.

As a head coach, I feel I should have a good, close dialogue with all eleven girls. We are two coaches, and we will be responsible for the eleven together. Stig Rune will be the contact person for one person, and me for another, but it will not be personal and yours. Then we failed, because this is a team with two coaches.

Was there anything that wasn’t done well enough before?

– number. I’ve been on this team for several years now, and I felt like we worked that way too.

Kveen agrees with the Svarstad motto:

– We have a plan. We will work closely with each other. We will follow and see all the athletes. We’ll have a little extra responsibility for the half of the team each, but the goal is for both of them to talk to all the athletes.

He adds:

– We won’t have two teams in the team. We have one team with two coaches.

to praise

The duo came up with energy and several performers say they are very excited.

Dagbladet confirmed they were introducing themselves when we spotted some of the fast tracks the women have taken down the slopes at Sognefjellet, which glistens around the mountaintop at 1,400 metres.

Before the quick nine draw, Svarstadt assembled the entire women’s team and gave a resounding speech that almost signaled a World Cup relay around the next turn.

There will be a lot of such scenes in the future, the main character promises herself. satisfies practitioners.

Smile when you look: Sjur Ole Svarstad gives clear messages to athletes while rallying in Sognefjellet.  Photo: Bjørn Langsem

Smile when you look: Sjur Ole Svarstad gives clear messages to athletes while rallying in Sognefjellet. Photo: Bjørn Langsem
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– It looks very promising. I think it can have a positive effect. There are different characters on who we had now and before. There are positives and negatives to both, but this is the positivity and determination we may have lost, Terrell Odnis-Wing tells Dagbladet.

She is supported by her colleagues on the women’s national team, including Ane Appelkvist Stenseth.

– Sjur Ole gives a lot of himself. Participates in creating a drive in the group. When a coach is too busy, you get “yourself,” Appelkvist Stenseth Dagbladet told Appelkvist.

Satisfied: Ane Appelkvist Stenseth (front) is delighted to have Stig Rune Kveen (back) and Sjur Ole Svarstad as the new coaches.  Here from a group on Sognefjellet.  Photo: Bjørn Langsem

Satisfied: Ane Appelkvist Stenseth (front) is delighted to have Stig Rune Kveen (back) and Sjur Ole Svarstad as the new coaches. Here from a group on Sognefjellet. Photo: Bjørn Langsem
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no women

Prior to the Ski Association’s selection of coaches, there was heated debate over whether the time was right for a female coach around elite teams. This hasn’t happened since Ingrid Wegerness (94) was a coach in the ’60s.

Maiken Caspersen Vala was among those who cried out the loudest, but the Queen of the Enemy, now resigned, did not hear.

Practitioners are not bothered:

We would not have had a woman if he had been a better qualified man. For my part, I don’t care if it’s a man or a woman, says Terrell Odense-Wing.

Happy New Dewey: Terrell Odnis Wong.  Photo: Bjørn Langsem

Happy New Dewey: Terrell Odnis Wong. Photo: Bjørn Langsem
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Perhaps there are many who are breathing a sigh of relief because of this, because in a period when many of them quit, a committee has been formed to look into the failure of the Norwegian women’s cross-country skiing, and the athletes all need to stay together.

The duo will be doing important work there, Ane Appelkvist Stenseth believes:

– We’re in the change of my generation, but then it’s good to have two coaches who are confident in where they want to be and have goals. It is contagious.

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