For this series, USA Nordic will be checking in with coaches of each discipline to get a pulse on Summer training. Today we chat with Tomas Matura, who in May took over the role of Women’s Nordic Combined Head Coach.
Congratulations on the new head coach position for the women’s nordic combined team! How has the position been so far?
Thank you, so far it’s not what I wish because everything is different in this Covid-19 situation. I wasn’t able to spend any time yet with the team but I hope that it will change soon.
How are your athletes doing this Summer?
From feedback I have from athletes and coaches, all athletes train hard and from videos and datas that I’m able to see, they are improving compared to last season. Many of them had a camp last week in Park City with the men’s and junior teams. It sounds like they had a lot of fun and quality training over there. I’m happy about this.
When will you conduct your first camp in Europe? Which athletes will attend?
First camp is still in the air. Now I am planning to take part of the team over to Europe in 2-3 weeks. But everything depends on travel restrictions.
Where will you be training during this camp? What are the goals for this first camp with the team?
The plan is to start camp in Czech Republic (Lomnice nad Popelkou), then Germany (Oberstdorf, Oberhof, or Klingenthal), Austria (Ramsau), and Slovenia (Planica). Also, if we can travel to Norway we would like to take part in Women’s International training camp in September. But as everything now all depends on travel restrictions and regulations of single countries.
Our goal will be to work more on the jumping part and have some high quality XC training in low elevation.
The Summer Grand Prix competitions have been cancelled, how does this affect preparation for the winter season?
It’s sad that all SGP was canceled. But I hope that it will not affect our preparation for the winter season and World Ski Championship in Oberstdorf. I hope that we will be able to meet some other teams in Europe when athletes will be here to get a better idea of where we are compared to others. This will help us see if everything is going in the right direction for us.
The first World Championship event for women’s nordic combined will be held in Oberstdorf, Germany this winter, will your team spend time training at the venue during the lead up?
I am planning to visit Oberstdorf for sure. I think that it is important for athletes to have a couple training sessions at the World Champs venue in Oberstdorf since we don’t have a chance to compete there because Covid-19 situation.
Is there something new that you will introduce to training this summer?
I have a couple ideas but I will keep that as a surprise for athletes till they will come to Europe.
Do you feel your team is more focused on ski jumping or cross country skiing development?
It’s individual, some athletes focusing now on the cross country side and some of them on jumping.
What are your goals during this first season as the women’s nordic combined head coach?
My goals are to have a World Championship podium in Oberstdorf and have happy athletes after the season who have reached their goals. I aim for all athletes to have new personal best results after this season and that we have fun together as a team. I also hope that we can move closer to being the best nordic combined team in the world.