“After an amazing season like I had last year, there are many people who will expect a lot from me. But I try only to focus on my own strength, my people who love me and trust in me, no matter what will happen."
“It was an incredible and never forgettable feeling.”
Germany’s Martin Fleig thrilled the home crowds at Finsterau 2017 when he won his first two Nordic skiing world titles on home snow. Now he hopes to experience the same atmosphere when the second World Para Nordic Skiing World Cup is held in Oberried, Germany between 20 and 28 January.
“I am really happy to know that some of my family and also some friends will come to watch the action at the World Cup in Oberried. But the best feeling for me would be to know, that my girlfriend is also out there at the stadium to cheer for me,” he added.
Fleig will certainly be in the spotlight in Oberried. The 2016-17 season was a breakthrough one for the 28-year-old athlete who won three medals in sitting biathlon events at the World Championships and also topped the World Cup biathlon rankings.
While the German skier finished just off the podium at the first World Cup stop in Canmore, Canada in December 2017, his results were still impressive. He placed fourth in the sitting, middle and long-distance cross-country races and was also fourth in the biathlon sprint.
“My goal for the upcoming World Cup in Oberried is to perform very well at skiing and at the shooting range,” Fleig said. “I really want to hit the podium for at least one time.”
Another main goal for Fleig this season are the 2018 Paralympic Winter Games. These will be the second Games for him after Sochi 2014, though he did not win any medals there.
Now as the reigning double world champion, he is prepared that expectations for his performance will be higher going into PyeongChang 2018.
“After an amazing season like I had last year, there are many people who will expect a lot from me,” Fleig said. “But I try only to focus on my own strength, my people who love me and trust in me, no matter what will happen. I also try to remind myself how I did it in Finsterau 2017. I know I am in good shape because I had a good summer, so I can keep calm on my own.”
The Oberried World Cup gets underway on 20 January. Live results will be available on the World Para Nordic Skiing website.