Tore Bjonviken placed 7th in a World Cup race this season. That was not good enough to keep his national team spot or for the development team. His future as a ski racer is now uncertain and â€œup in the airâ€.
“I’m of course disappointed that I was left out of any team. I had expected the elite team to be the six they choose, but I had hoped that they would chose a mix of young and old for the development team — they didn’t.”
How do you feel about this focus on young skiers?
“Objectively I can understand it since they are simultaneously also putting more effort and recourses towards the very best skiers on the team. For my part I had hoped that it wouldn’t be like this,” says Bjonviken.
How will this affect you?
“As of today my financial situation is not so that I can train and focus 100%. I have to work more than in the past — maybe a 50% job if I can handle it. I also need to try to get a sponsor to support me. I’m dependant in succeeding with that. I have just started the sponsor search.”
Bjonviken has already started in a job in one of Oslo’s sport shops, Milslukeren. The shop is very accommodating regarding his training and racing, but loosing his national team spot is financially â€œnot goodâ€. Tore’s girlfriend is pregnant and he can’t just focus on himself. She is a college student and their economy is â€œtightâ€.
“It wasn’t a good time to get kicked off the team. It would have been different if I was young and single and had only myself to think about. We now have a baby involved and I have to adjust.”
He hopes to train with those on the National team that lives in the Oslo area like Svartedal and Aukland. At this point he is uncertain about camps and fall training. A baby will automatically reduce the ability of participating at camps, but he is still in need of being a part of something with a plan. An altitude camp is also on the wish list.
First he needs to raise some money.Â Skjeldal was able to handle this situation last year. He was kicked off the team a year ago, but had a very good season and reclaimed his spot this year. That can become an inspiration.
“He showed that it’s possible,” says Bjonviken Â