Friday, March 27, 2015

Ida Bobach: "I have good odds on winning a WOC medal"

On the starting day of Danish Spring, the attention goes to the nº 2 in the IOF World Ranking, the Danish Ida Bobach. Problems in the Achilles tendon has prevented her from following the training plan in the best way, but the goals, those, remain high. This and much more to read at her interview to the Portuguese Orienteering Blog.

You belong to a family of orienteers. How important was it – and is it! – in your career?

Ida Bobach (I. B.) - Orienteering has always been our “family-thing” and we have traveled to a lot of competitions around Europe. I got a lot experience from an early age and I think it has meant a lot to my technical development.

How did you see your brother Søren's gold in WOC Sprint last year?

I. B. - I found it a bit surprisingly because I have never seen him as a Sprint specialist. But in 2012 he was 9th a the WOC sprint so I new that he was good. Søren is really good performing at his best in the important competitions so even though he had had a lot of injuries I still believed he could do really well, but that he won was a bit of a surprise. I think it is really good for Danish Orienteering that we got a World Champion. There is starting to be more focus on Orienteering and hopefully it will help in the development of our sport in Denmark.

And what about your silver ones (Middle and Relay)?

I. B. - We have been close to a Relay medal for a couple of years but we have always ended 4th-6th, except at WOC 2013 which was quite bad. It was such a relief finally to get a Relay medal. It was also a relief for me to get a medal in the Middle Distance again. I got a silver medal in the Middle Distance in 2011 which was quite surprisingly to most people. In 2012 I was 4th at Middle and I did bad in 2013 (11th, I think). So I was really happy to be back to the medals.

Following your great performances in the WOC and World Cup in 2014 and your previous successes, can you sum up what it takes to get you to the second place in the IOF World Ranking?

I. B. - I succeeded in getting my mental focus right in most of the important competitions in 2014. I did struggle a lot with my Achilles tendon in the spring but for the last two months before WOC I could stabilize my amount of running. Even though it was not a great amount, my shape was good at WOC and of course that also helped me believe in myself. I also succeeded in stabilizing my running amount in the fall and that really seems to get me in shape. So to do well in 2015, I guess I have to get my running on a descent level and be careful not to get injured. I have to set my head straight and believe in myself when I'm standing at the start line in every competition.

How was the start of the season? Was the Australian adventure positive?

I. B. - It was really great to explore Tasmania and the competitions at the World Cup were really good. I had some okay performances but I think it is hard to get in competition shape in that time of the year and actually I'm not quite sure that it is a good idea to try to peak at that time. Having a World Cup in January makes the season a bit weird because you have to go home an do a lot of basic training again before the European season really starts. But I think it was quite nice to have some summer and nice experiences. That definitely got me happier through the winter.

How do you feel right now? With your “DNS at the first danish spring race”, it seems that things aren't going as well as they should.

I. B. - No, unfortunately I have some injury troubles and it is quite frustrating because I really thought that I was playing on the safe side. Apparently I just can't do a lot of running and I really have to be careful not to increase my running to much. I chose not to start at the first competitions to be on the even safer side, hopefully. But I will compete next weekend and I look forward to see how I'm doing compared to the other danish girls.

Typically, how many hours a week do you commit to training? What are your least favourite training days? And what about your favourite?

I. B. - I typically train 10-13 hours a week. My least favourite training days must be days where I'm only doing alternative training, e.g. Aqua jogging or cross training. I find that a bit boring. My favourite training days are days where I'm doing high speed orienteering.

Have you scheduled the next big steps before the WOC?

I. B. - I will go on a training camp to England and Scotland during Easter and the week after. That will be one and a half week of good and important WOC training. The World Cup stages, in Norway and Sweden, will be important races before WOC where I really have to get into the right competition focus.

What are your main goals for the season? Are we going to see you winning a gold medal in the World Champs?

I. B. - I will focus on Long, Middle and Relay for the World Championships and my goal is to fight for medals in all three competitions. I think I have the best odds in Relay. Many runners will be able to fight for medals in the Middle Distance so I need to get everything straight to get a medal but I think that I can do that if I'm really focused. My odds for the Long Distance depends a lot on how my training progress will be. I really hope that my Achilles will let me run some long competitions during spring. If I can do that, I think I have good odds on winning a WOC medal.

Knowing the place, the terrains, your rivals (and yourself), what will be the key to succeed?

I. B. - I need to have some good speed for Middle and Relay but on the same time I have to be quite strong in the hips to get through the heavy heather in the Long Distance. But most important of all I have to believe in myself and stay focus on the task when I'm competing. That will lead to good orienteering.

How do you see the possibility of keeping the second place – or even getting the leadership - in the IOF World Ranking in the end of the season?

I. B. - It does not mean really much to me, personally, to be high ranked in the IOF World Ranking. I value a Championship higher. But if I do well at WOC I will probably be ranked high. I also need to do well on a couple of the World Cups to keep my second place.

In the end of our talk, I would ask you to make a wish to all orienteers.

I. B. - Get out there and do a lot of nice orienteering!

Joaquim Margarido

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