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Ladies in the Spotlight: Anna Berktold (GER)

Finally we can prove to the boys what were able to do!

It must have been one of the best pieces of news ever for 15-year-old Anna Berktold: not only will there be a future ahead for her as a girl in her discipline of Nordic Combined after all but that future will practically start in her backyard in two weeks time. In Ladies in the Spotlight, the resident of Oberstdorf talks about her goals for the first ever Ladies Nordic Combined competitions, competing on home turf and her career so far.

What were your first thoughts when you heard that there would be a ladies training camp and international competitions in Ladies Nordic Combined taking place?

Anna Berktold: I was super happy that we finally do have competitions in Nordic Combined for us girls. Finally we can prove to the boys what were able to do!

What are you looking forward to the most when you think about the camp at Oberstdorf?

Berktold: Actually, I have to say pretty much everything. The best thing is that it isnt only two to five girls at the start as usual, but 29. Its way more fun!

What are your goals for the camp, what would you like to achieve?

Berktold: Its my big goal to be among the Top 5 in jumping as well as in the cross-country part. That will definitely also depend on my shape on these days but its worth a try!

Is is especially great for you to have the first international ladies competitions in Nordic Combined take place on your home turf in Oberstdorf?

Berktold: Yes, I really like it! I know the hills and also the tracks so that might be an advantage for me. Its great to have the first international competitions right on my doorstep!

Do tell us a little bit about your career so far. When did you start skiing and ski jumping? Which of the two do you prefer?

Berktold: I started my career with alpine skiing when I was just 4 years old but it became to stressful for me at a certain point! (laughs) So I took up cross-country skiing when I was about five years old but that was a bit boring, especially because there was not much going on in the summertime.

So when I was six, I started with Nordic Combined. But being a girl, I was always told that we wouldnt have a future in Nordic Combined, so I switched to ski jumping. So I basically went back and forth between Ski Jumping and Nordic Combined from age six till age 15. But as soon as I heard, we would be having this camp in Oberstdorf I went back to Nordic Combined! I simply like doing both, ski jumping and cross-country.

In which discipline do you see yourself in the future?

Berktold: I see myself in Nordic Combined in the future. This combination of ski jumping and cross-country skiing is just so fascinating to me.

FIS-ski.com 15 August 2014

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