Sprinter Havard Bjerkeli Talks About His Team's Fall Training
Many skiers on the Norwegian Sprint National team are equally ambitious about the regular races as sprint racing. Havard Bjerkeli, the winner of Friday’s Norwegian opening sprint race feels that this is (negatively) affecting the training:
â€œIt has affected some of the workoutsâ€
Sprint team members Eldar Ronning, Kristian Horntvedt, John Kristian Dahl and partly Tor Arne Hetland and Havard Bjerkeli himself are all trying to ski fast in regular races in addition to the sprint. This has caused that the sprint team is not a pure sprint team. That affects the training.
â€œWe have done certain distance workouts and interval sessions at camps that pure sprinters might not have doneâ€.
Â This suits Bjerkeli personally since he also has a desire to ski well in 10 and 15 kilometer races. He wants to place in the top 10 in World Cup races also on those distances. Despite this he believes that they should have trained more speed.
â€œMy training has gone well, but I’m afraid that we have not done enough sprint training.
Bjerkeli has brought this up internally with the team.
â€œI feel in retrospect that we should have trained more speed this fallâ€
Are you going to do anything about that now?
â€œThe foundation is already put down. But there are only one (main) sprint race in December and one in January, so it’s plenty of time to do such training on skisâ€.
Sprint teammate Trond Einar Elden understands Bjerklie’s though process, but feels that he has done what he should have done regarding training. He is surprised that this subject is being brought up.
He brought it up internally. I was a bit surprised that he brought it up, but I can in part agree.
â€œI still feel that I have done what I need to do. The pure sprint and strength training that Tore Arne Hetland and I are doing accounts for 15 to 20% of my training. I’m also doing one hard anaerobic workout every 14th day.
Elden is also saying that they have not done a lot of sprint training at the camps. But he feels that this has been according to the plan.
â€˜That was according to the planâ€
Sprint coach Ulf Morten Aune disagrees with Bjerkeli’s criticism. He says it has to do with the (World Cup) race schedule.
â€˜This has mostly to do with the schedule. There is only one sprint (race) in December and one in January. It’s not smart to be at your peak now. I think it’s smart to save some ammunition. We are going to train a bit speed later in the seasonâ€.