Thinking is forbidden in ski races

Thinking is forbidden in ski races

Barely 15 years old, jacob schramm already has six, seven years as a ski racer under his belt. Eppenreuther is considered to be a rough skier. He has not yet decided on a special discipline, but as an U16 skier he is only allowed to compete in slalom and giant slalom anyway. For the youngsters super G and downhill are taboo.

At the races in the german school cup he has to compete with alpine kids or students of the skigymnasium berchtesgaden, who can do twice or three times as much snow training. Jacob is the only flatlander in the german top of his age group – he is currently in 12th place, but has also been second before – and is glad that he can train in the fichtelgebirge despite the current bad snow conditions. At the hempelsberg in oberwarmensteinach, the lift operator has created a base for the ski talent with artificial snow so that at least technical training is possible.

The schoolboy from grafengehaig has 20 races left on his schedule this year. And he has thought about what goes on in the head of a skier during a competition.

Adrenalin helps
Jacob schramm: "you're standing at the start and right away it's time to go. Excitement is good because adrenaline helps the body to perform at its best. Taking a deep breath and beating his chest two, three, six or seven times to push himself, to catapult himself out fully motivated and with all the energy at his disposal.

Then it gets serious. The starter closes the barrier. There comes the question: "ready?" You do not answer, lift the sticks over the barrier and stick them in the snow. During the command ,3, 2, 1 – go!' you go wild, but don't get overly motivated. You start in the previously long viewed run. Colleagues, coaches and parents shout you out of the starting gate, and you attack from the very first second.

Everything you repeated just before the race, you have to do now: bend your hips and always put weight on the ski; knees in front, hands in front; come from behind in the steep passage; and: full attack.
Imagine it's all at stake. Olympics 2014 in sochi, second run, you are first, but you have only four hundredths advantage. A whole nation is cheering for you and was roaring you down the slope. Were you going to give it your all or rather finish in fourth place? Of course the risk is high to fail because of a small mistake. But if you risk a little, you can also win a lot.

Full groove in the world cup circus
Who does not ride on full groove, has nothing to look for in the world cup circus. You can lose everything with a fall, a fender-bender – but it's a matter of nerves. You live for skiing, you train for such moments for years, and when it's there, nobody thinks: well, 2. Or 3. Place is also good. It's all about winning and what comes after: fame, glory and a hell of a lot of training again … You can't let up in this sport, and if you don't understand that, you can't stay on top for long.

Now comes the fourth, fifth, sixth pole, and the race goes well. What to do? Of course, you risk to win! To get everything out of yourself, not to ski already, but to ski fast, which also brings mistakes with it, such as jerking or inside skiing.

Ted ligety is brainless, but the best
Now comes the part. The place of all places in this run. You've been standing here for a few minutes, trying to remember exactly what to do right so as not to do wrong. But actually you can only go wrong here, you think. You think! If you start to think, it will be nothing. You have to go down the hill almost brainlessly, without thinking, as fast as you can and get around the red and blue poles. See ted ligety. The guy is just brainless, but the best in giant slalom. In a fraction of a second, in which you think, more mistakes creep in than in a whole run, in which you do not think. So when you get to the spot of all the spots, you just pull through, put the ski in traction and put all your weight on the edge of the piste.

"Best time!"
Shortly before the goal, the flachstuck. Now blob not let up! You weigh less than most of the competitors. So what! You drive a hell of a lot better than the other grattler! So go as low as you can and put less pressure on the turns than you did before in the steeps so you don't get buried in the snow and lose time.
The last gate, a red one, is coming towards you. A few more meters and you'll be at the finish line. "Best time", it sounds from the loudspeaker – and now the real thrill begins. You can hardly believe it, you had a bad feeling. But your bad feeling was better than that of the others.

Now comes the countdown. The best skiers are still on top. You already see yourself beaten, every opponent ahead. But somehow always a few tenths or hundredths are missing. The strongest competitor comes last. His time seems to stand still – but so does he. He made a bigger mistake.

You can hardly believe that you have won with a little luck and pure adrenaline. The first wishes of happiness reach you, and the up and down ride of your feelings ends on the summit of mount everest. You are the winner. You, who had already been written off and could show it to everyone. A real thrill, this sport."