Alexia Runggaldier had a fantastic season in 2016/17. At the World Championships in Hochfilzen she won the bronze medal in the Individual race. At her home round of the World Cup in Antholz she got her first ever podium coming third, again in the Individual, and also helped the Italian Women’s team to third place in the Relay in the same weekend. She was born in Bressanone on the 27th of November 1991 and her younger sister Carmen is also a biathlete.
Like her Facebook Page: Alexia Runggaldier
Follow her on Twitter: @AlexiaMRTmx
Why did you become a biathlete?
I became a biathlete thanks to my father and the Ski Club of Val Gardena. When I was a little girl, I practiced Alpine Skiing. One day my dad brought me to try some Cross Country Skiing and after this experience I knew that I wanted to do this. My Ski Club let me try shooting and I noticed that biathlon was a very fascinating and exciting sport. At the age of 18 the sport department of the Police hired me and that made it possible for me to became a professional biathlete!
You had a great World Championships. Can you describe your bronze medal winning race in Hochfilzen? What do you remember about it? How did you feel?
It was a strange race, because I didn’t feel so good on the skis and I lost a pole on the 4th loop. During the race, after loosing the pole, I was thinking ‘oh no today it will not be my day’ but at the end of the race I was starting to hope that it would be my day! 🙂 I was very happy and I enjoyed every moment!
It was your first full season on the World Cup and you had an amazing round in Antholz. What was it like to be on the podium twice at home? Were all your friends and family there to see it?
It was an indescribable feeling to be for the first time in an Individual race on the podium and this at home. I was crying tears of happiness and relief. And then three days after the second podium came with my teammates and this was the best way to conclude an amazing weekend! Yes, my parents did a weekend of partying and also my friends came to cheer for me. The atmosphere in Antholz was very special to me!
You improved a lot last season. Why do you think that happened? Have you changed anything in training? Is it your shooting that is better or the skiing or both?
I think I improved a lot last season, because I started to listen to my body and I’ve found a way of training that is good for my body and my characteristics. I think I mostly improved in skiing but also in shooting.
The Italian women’s team is really strong right now and you have a great relay team. Do you think you can win a medal in PyeongChang?
I hope so! 🙂
What are your personal goals for the Olympics? What do you think of the course and range in PyeongChang?
My personal goals for the Olympics are to be in good shape in order to be able to give my best. I think that the course is quite hard but I like it and also the range is not that easy.
What have you been doing for summer training?
We had good summer preparation. With the team, we had a lot of training camps in France, Germany, Austria, Italy and also in Norway for some skiing. The good weather made it possible to train well…although it was too hot sometimes!
If it’s possible can you try and describe your process when you are shooting? Is it all automatic or are you thinking everything through all the time? How do you try and stop thinking about the other athletes and what is happening in the race?
During the race the process of shooting most of the time is automatic. On the range the movements that have been trained during summer training come out, but sometimes when I’m tired and the shape is not so good I have to think about some processes.
During a race a lot is happening, but the best thing is to focus on myself and to do my race.
Do you have a favourite biathlon track? Where is it and why?
My favourite biathlon track is Hochfilzen or Oslo.
Does your rifle have a name?
Describe yourself in three words.
Ambitious, simple, bright.
Quick fire Questions:
Favourite biathlon nation (not your own): Canada
Favourite rifle design (any biathlete): Simon Schempp
Favourite ski suit design (from any nation): Of course Italy 😉
Favourite shooting range: Oslo
Lucky bib number: 59
Funniest biathlete on the World/IBU Cup: Sarah Beaudry
Nicest biathlete on the World/IBU Cup: Giuseppe Montello
Best thing about being a biathlete: The life we can live. We have the chance to travel a lot, seeing new places and meeting a lot of nice people.
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