Johannes Thingnes Bo (29) had his best start to the season ever. It pays off with more than 1 million crowns in prize money in just over 14 days.
Aside from the World Cup premiere over 20km in Finland, the 29-year-old won all five races and was on the winning team in two stages.
Since he also started wearing the leader’s yellow and red jersey, he has won €98,700 in prize money. Maybe a million kronor. Perhaps he could add another NOK 400,000 in bonuses from equipment suppliers and sponsors – a cautious estimate.
Thingnes Bø doesn’t complain about paying – or settling.
– IBU (International Biathlon Union) is good at getting prize money. We provide people with entertainment, we travel a lot, we run a lot of races and a lot of people watch us. It’s very good, says the 29-year-old after another showing with victory in the sprint race on Thursday in Annecy, France.
In the rush to victory, he’s also pleased with the IBU’s new ladder and solidarity awards, which means more athletes are now being paid.
– With the new scheme, the 30 best get prize money. When I entered the World Cup, only the top 10 places were paid. This means that athletes who sometimes have to pay a share themselves to get into the races can use the prize money to invest them. It may have been useful to many. The economy will be good if you are among the top 30.
Before starting Saturday’s chase, running a quick penalty run ahead of Sturla Holm Lægreid and a 39-second cut to Benedikt Doll, Thingnes Bø made a 1–1–1–1 winning streak. Only Martin Fourcade (2016/17) and Ole Einar Bjørndalen (2006/2007) can display similar stats.
– It was a very good start to the season, there wasn’t much to complain about. It really went well and there are many reasons for that.
In short, Johannes Thingnes Bo improved in every way after last year’s season, which actually came to an end after the Olympics in Beijing because he needed a longer break.
– I got a “load” of motivation after a rather bad year. There was not much to delay at the start of the season. It was pretty good, Thingnes Bø reports.
Sturla Holm Lægreid, who finished second in Kontiolahti, Hochfilzen and Annecy on Thursday, believes her teammate is setting a new benchmark.
– He’s a little more on the cutting edge than he’s been in several years and is poised to set a new standard – as he’s shown so many times before. After all, he is a natural talent in biathlon and has a phenomenal level that has emerged again.
So what has changed since last season? The short answer is most of them.
The biggest difference is shooting prone, with Thingnes Bø’s hit percentage increasing from 83 to 92. That’s an increase of nine percentage points.
– Much of the answer lies there. With a hit percentage of 92, you’re in a better position early in the race and can go further in the times instead of getting pressured from behind if you miss. This made it easier to hit while standing, too, explains Johannes Thingensboe.
Standing shooting improved by two percentage points since last winter, from 84 to 86.
– It should be possible to improve based on how you trained this year. I am very happy with shooting and skiing. I feel safer on the platform and feel more comfortable when I’m skating.
The speed on the track is now seven percent faster than the average in the World Cup. There, too, Thingnes Bø improved by two percentage points.
Together with his wife and children, Johannes Thingnes Böh moved from Oslo and his home track in Holmenkollen to Kungsvinger. This has not made things easier for the Thingnes Bø athletes in their daily workouts.
– The fact that I moved “out of the country” and had to do more on my own probably made the task more difficult, but it did not put an end to my ability to do it.
One of the first things he “did” was get a giant roller skate when he built himself a practice room.
– With the simple training room located in the basement, there is a bit of work that needs to be done to set it up. everything is ready. All you have to do is hit the power button, and the treadmill will work.
And winning the World Cup looks just as easy. Just press start…
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