Jonas Leandersson: new life, new training, same goal

Posted on | October 17, 2016 | Category: News

Jonas Leandersson celebrates victory in Aalau        Photo: Erik Borg

At the very end of the season Jonas Leandersson took his first World Cup victory this year, but it wasn’t the race of the year for the Swede, who has started a new life in sport.

Jonas Leandersson had an incredible run in the final World Cup race, the Sprint. The Swede had a winning margin of twenty seconds.

“Race of the year? No, but it’s one of the very best.”

– And the best is?

“I think the Middle Distance at the Suunto Games,” he smiles.

The Suunto Games was two weeks ago, and it was held in the coming host nation for WOC: Estonia. “I will go for WOC also next year, but now I am taking things one year at a time,” the 26-year-old Swede says.

Leandersson showed strength in the forest as well in the final weekend of the World Cup. He was fifth in the Long Distance in Aarau. “On the way to next season I will focus more on the forest distances. The sprint I know how to do. I don’t think these skills will disappear even if I go more for Middle and Long.”

– Which distances do you head for in Estonia – it looks as though you can already manage everything?

“We’ll see how it goes with the work to raise up my level. It’s too early to make a choice about what I will give priority to.”

New daily life

Leandersson is trained as a physical therapist and now he has started normal work. “I am working half-time. I’ve done it for only one and a half months, so it’s a bit early to say how it works.” During the autumn it has clearly gone very well, so it seems that the combination of sport and work might be a success.

Big moments

The world champion in Sprint from 2015 and European champion on the same distance from 2012 and 2014 didn’t get an individual medal at WOC on home ground. He was fifth in the Sprint. “The margins are so small. Previously I have had the margins in my favour. This time they weren’t,” he says.

But the Swede, who lives in Stockholm and is originally from Karlstad in the south-western part of Sweden, close to Norway, has again had a great year with a lot of great moments. When he looks back, there is one he mentions directly. “It was such a wonderful moment to decide Tiomila,” he smiles. Leandersson ran the last leg for Södertälje-Nykvarn and was the strongest in the run-in.

The head office of the International Orienteering Federation is now in Karlstad. IOF CEO Tom Hollowell and Jonas were both in OK Tyr before Jonas went to Stockholm and changed clubs. Hollowell was one of many who congratulated Jonas after his Sprint win at the weekend.

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