DRAMMEN (VG) The Norway cross country team hasn’t had a coach in 53 years. After the winner of the show on Bragernes torg, Maiken Caspersen Falla (31) pulls the debate again. National team coach Ole Morten Iversen will not clarify the future for the time being.
– We have very good coaches today, but I think we will include more women, says Caspersen Vala After putting Olympic winner Jonna Sundling in her place in the World Cup race.
She confirmed that she is “in love” with the training duo today, which consists of Iversen and coach Ola Vijn Hatstad. But he also says:
Maybe it’s time to try an elite female trainer.
Caspersen Falla has been in the finals for 14 years, but has never had a female coach.
– I’ve missed all these years. I think the coach can see where the girls are developing. It was very exciting to hire a coach. Not that we’ve had a bad connection now, but I think it might be easier for young girls to connect with a lady, she says.
Caspersen Falla does not succeed in Beijing, but he can boast of six Olympic titles and a World Cup. She mentions former teammate Marthy Kristofferson (32) as an obvious candidate if there should be changes to the coaching staff.
– We who were in a team with her on our way out. And then it makes it easier for her to work as a coach, she says.
Norway can be part of a major generational change on the part of women. Therese Juhaug will spend the spring deciding whether to continue her career. Caspersen Falla also cannot promise that it will continue at Planica WC next winter.
As of today, there is no vacancy. I haven’t thought about it much, but there are many talents that we must nurture and point in the right direction. It was exciting to be involved in shaping and developing the runners, says Marthy Kristofferson.
Today, she says, she enjoys developing the young athletes on Team Elon Innlandet.
– I will not have a clear opinion about the development work that has been done. But we see that it is a little thinner on the women’s side in Norway than in Sweden. It was the opposite in the past. The Swedes have done many good things. I don’t think the talent in Norway is less than it used to be. But it may have to do with how they train at a young age and beyond, says Kristoffersen, who describes today’s Norway coaches as “very skilled”.
– But it might be helpful to have a female trainer with slightly different characteristics. I’m not sure it’s me. But I think we girls – especially if we’re into it ourselves – are aware of a number of things that can be difficult, says Kristofferson who himself has many years of national team experience as well as six gold medals.
Skating Association Development Director Brett Baldishul signs Kristofferson’s nomination. It also withdraws the coach of the junior national team Monica Cora. Baldishol has long struggled to get more female trainers.
– It might be more important than it was. Coaches must enter elite level. We have good enough female trainers. I do not control this. Baldishul says that Espen Bjerwig bears this responsibility. She herself is a former coach for the national junior team.
After a sprint at Drammen, 63-year-old Ole Morten Iversen didn’t want to shed light on the future.
– I’ve thought about it a lot. When ESPN (Gerwig’s cross-country manager, editor’s note) asks me in the spring, I hope I get a clear answer, he says.
On repeated requests, he will not detail his opinion on the future after four years as head of the women’s national team.
– Am I talking vaguely or? It’s about doing things in the right order. If the coach is going to give up or the runner is going to give up, the dumbest thing to do is tell the media first. It’s crazy.
– Not if you’ve decided?
Yes, you must inform your employer and those you work with first. Anything else is vile in every sense of the word. Most of us have a laid-back attitude when it comes to painting a picture of ourselves. Simply.
Note! The only coach in the history of the national team is the legendary Ingrid Wigrennes (94). Norway, as president, won its first Olympic gold medal in women’s cross-country skiing in the relay race in Grenoble in 1968.
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