Junior World Ski Orienteering Championships: Young talents took gold in the sprint

Posted on | February 13, 2007 | Category: News

Hana Hanciková, 18, and Olli-Markus Taivainen, still only 17, are the new junior world champions in ski orienteering. “Hard training is the key to my success”, says Hana. Olli-Markus does not really know why he is doing so well but says: “Can it be because I am training the right way?”

The Czech Success Continues!

Hana Hanciková is a new junior world champion from the CzechRepublic. Last summer, Jan Benes from the same country became a junior world champion in foot orienteering.

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Hana Hancikova was the “star of the show” in the sprint distance.

“It’s a surprise for me. I didn’t think about victory. There are so many strong Russians and Swedes”, smiles Hana. She is from Zlin, but she attends the high school for cross-country skiing in Nove Mesto, a big skiing centre.

It was very close in the women’s class in the opening distance in the championships. The gap to Helene Söderlund from Sweden in second place was only four seconds.. The bronze also went to Sweden; Eva Svensson, who won two individual golds in 2005, took that one.

The winner from the Czech Republic is 18 years old and believes that hard training is the key to her success. “This winter I have spent one month in Finnish Lapland in October/November and two-three weeks in Tauplitz and Ramsau on glaciers. Shortly before the championships, being held not far away from Salzburg in Austria, she has taken part in five ski-o-races.

With her gold she follows Jan Benes, who won the middle distance jointly with the Dane Søren Bobach at the foot-orienteering JWOC in Lithuania last summer. The Czech juniors are really showing strength all year.

The incredible multi-talent from Lapland

Olli-Markus Taivainen is taking part in his fifth world championships as a junior in Austria, and he is still only 17 years old. On this first day he also got his first gold.

“Why am I doing well? I don’t really know. Can it be because I am training the right way? I am ‘listening’ a lot to my body. If I feel tired, I do not train so much. I train a lot on my own. I want to do my training in my own way, but I am not so talented. I do have to train”, he says. His father Marko is his trainer, but the 17-year-old Finn also plans a lot of his own training.

– How are you training?

“I train quite a lot, but without a lot of hard training”, the Finn says.

Olli-Markus is taking part in his third championship in ski orienteering. Last year he was second in the middle distance in Russia, and fifth in the middle distance at the foot-orienteering championships in Lithuania. He is getting more and more experience in taking part in important competitions. “I have got more self confidence. Now I may not win, but I know I can do it”, he says.

The gap to the Russian Taras Kashchuk in second place was seven seconds. The Swede Johan Edin took the bronze, five seconds after the Russian.

The winner is from the quite small town Pello in Lapland. It is very close to Sweden and Olli-Markus can look over the border from his home. His brother Juho-Matti Taivainen (19) is also taking part in JWOC, and finished 10th in the sprint. And yet another young man from Pello is taking part in Austria: Taneli Pantsar is competing in the European Youth Championships.

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Olli-Markus Taivainen took gold in the sprint.

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Helene Söderlund (SWE) came second, only 4 seconds behind Hana Hanciková.

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Eva Svensson (SWE) took bronze.

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Russian Taras Kashchuk came second, seven seconds behind the winner…

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…and the Swede Johan Edin took the bronze, five seconds after the Russian.

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