â€Everything is going really positively, I’m much stronger than last year!â€
The 2007-08 World Cup Sprint Overall Runner-Up Emil Jonnson from Sweden, is even more optimistic for the upcoming World Championships season and has led off the training season already surpassing expectations. This week he is working as an instructor at the Solleftea Summer Ski School along with fellow Swedish ski stars Charlotte Kalla and Robin Bryntesson. Pete Phillips, coach at Burke Mountain Academy, leads a trip of American junior skiers to participate in this camp every summer.
â€I’m totally focused on the World Championships in Liberec. The skate sprint there is the main goal for my season.â€
The World Cup circuit will be a second priority for Jonsson next season. He still is unsure whether or not he will partake in all of the World Cup sprint races on the docket.
â€I’ll have to see how training is going. I’m planning my training so that I’ll be in top form for the World Championships, and as a result I might skip a few World Cup races.â€
Last season Jonnson lost the overall World Cup Sprint Title by a mere two points to Norwegian Ola Vigen Hattestad.
â€I hope the Norwegians are training well, because next winter I’m out for revenge,â€ promises the ever-confident Swede.
The Gastrike skier sounds like nothing will stop him. And why would anything?
Last season he was constantly fighting for the podium and is possibly Sweden’s biggest hope for a medal in Liberec. Emil won the World Cup in Canmore and was on the podium three more times.
â€œIt’s unbelievable how well my training season has begun this year, I just hope I continue to feel this good all the time!â€
After this week in Solleftea, the young star heads to Torsby to train with the National Team for a week in the ski tunnel. Otherwise, he’ll be mostly training in Ostersund, the center of the Swedish elite racing community, or at his hometown in Arsunda.
â€I’m trying to not do so many show-races this summer as I’ve done in the past. I need some unplanned time to focus on training.â€
He could certainly go all the way in Liberec. The 22 year old from Arsunda could very well do what compatriot Bjorn Lind did at the Olympics in Torino in 2006: double gold in both individual and team sprint competitions. Besides this past winter’s second place overall in the Sprint Cup, Emil was third overall in the 2006-07 season. He took silver at the WC sprint in Stockholm that season on home turf, and his victory in Canmore this season was his first time on the top step of the podium in World Cup competition. This year, he was third again in Stockholm and also in Drammen. Emil is a contender for the podium in any sprint race, no matter what style or format! Watch out Liberec 2009.