Alexis Pinturault reacts with emotion to his title at the World Ski Championships

French skier Alexis Pinturault won in front of his home crowd during the combined event of the 2023 Worlds after several months without convincing results. A title he describes as “unexpected” for those who have experienced a long air gap and a difficult start to the season.

Journalist : What flavor does this title of world champion have?

Alexis Pinturault : “It’s quite incredible, especially since it was not necessarily expected. I necessarily had the desire, the motivation to give the best of myself for this event. But it was necessary to be as realistic: I make a beginning of the season where I hang a single podium, I am regularly in the first six, seven but never on “the box” (the podium). So to be able to seek a gold medal, it was unexpected. Especially given the of the last two slaloms, which were Schladming and Kitzb├╝hel, where I couldn’t take the qualification in the second run.

Maybe my start to the season helped: if I arrive and I’m one of the favourites, a lot is automatically expected of me and that’s normal. There, I arrive in a situation where I did not do much. So maybe it’s easier, in a way.”

Journalist : What difference is there on an emotional level between this world title and that of 2019, in the combined of Are (Sweden)?

Alexis Pinturault : “Just this medal will put the medals of the other World Championships completely in the background. If we talk about victory, of a single event, we can say that it is the most beautiful of my career. It is full stories: I win in France, and even more, in my station, so it adds an extra soul.”

Journalist : How did you manage to bounce back after your bad seasons?

Alexis Pinturault : “I think that I really want to take advantage of this fortnight in front of this public, in my station, in front of my family and my friends. It was the most important thing: to be able to take advantage of this atmosphere, this chance. I know only one world championship in my village, I will only live one. It’s a chance that is not given to many athletes, but it is given to me, so I wanted to surf there -above.”

Journalist : Last year, you hit rock bottom. What did it bring you for today?

Alexis Pinturault : “Last year allowed me to ask myself the right questions, to know if I wanted to continue. If I’m still here, it’s because I still had the motivation. allowed me to go deep inside myself, to find out what I wanted, and then I had to put it all back in shape. All this experience allowed me to learn what I am capable of, that this what happens on the classic circuit, you have to put it aside when you arrive in these big events.

Journalist : Do you think you served as a springboard for the France team?

Alexis Pinturault : “It’s a good start. I know what it’s like to arrive in the second week when there are no medals. Automatically there is a little more pressure, a form of anxiety , whether in coaches, in the media, in athletes, we are beginning to perceive it. It can be good for everyone.”

Source: Europe1

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