– Have felt completely alone – NRK Sport – Sports news, results and broadcast schedule

25-year-old Jenssen is among the most promising athletes behind the elite level on the men’s side.

But the season has not been as desired for Trøndelag.

The stable good results have not been forthcoming. During the National Championships in Granåsen just over two months ago, Jenssen admitted that he had gone on a training spree.

– Must have someone they can relate to

He has only skied two times since the championship and has had plenty of time to reflect on why things have gone the way they have and when NRK calls he is open to the criticism he has served the national team management.

NM DOWN: On the favorite distance 15 kilometers freestyle, Jan Thomas Jenssen was only number 22 during the NM at home in Granåsen.
Photo: Geir Olsen / NTB

– My message was that I must have one thing in order. It is to have follow-up and continuity in everything I do. I really miss that the Norwegian Ski Association has anyone in Trondheim. I think it’s a shame it has not been like that.

When asked directly whether the training crash this winter could have been avoided with closer follow-up, Jenssen answers as follows without thinking:

– Yes.

– Is it relevant to continue on the recruiting national team as the situation is now?

Jenssen spends time thinking when he gets the question. He says he is unsure, but feels he must talk to the leaders of the Ski Association first.

– I can say so much that I hope there will be a change. That they themselves understand that the practitioners must have someone they can relate to and relate to in the local community.

Different in Oslo

Already this summer, Emil Iversen chose to speak for the people of Trøndelag on NRK and thought they needed help.

Trønderen pointed out that, for example, a large group in Oslo with both national team and recruit national team runners could benefit from the fact that two coaches are stationed in the capital.

Trondheim has been completely different and no coach from the association.


Johannes Høsflot Klæbo and Jan Thomas Jenssen, here during a joint gathering for the people of Trøndelag in Trondheim last summer.
Photo: Ole Martin Wold / NTB

– Feeling alone

On the recruiting national team, head coach Torstein Drivenes lives in Western Norway with responsibility for 12 runners. Jacob Walther is said to have had some responsibility for the best Norwegian recruits at our gathering, summer and autumn. But in winter he is lubricating at the elite level.

– I have felt completely alone. Even if there is someone who is going to be your coach, you will not be able to make the relationships you need. It’s like checking out a lady. You think she’s nice, you talk to her on the “chat”, then it’s interesting, says Jenssen.

– But you get no connection and fall in love with the girl. The same is true when you have a coach on the other side of the country. I can not have the relationship I want. It is impossible to do.

– Cultural differences

Jenssen’s alternative to the recruiting national team is the regional team Team Elon Midt-Norge, of which he was a part in the 2018/2019 season. As in previous years, the training group with coach Kristian Skrødal has had great success this season as well.

– If we look at their training routine, they have a coach who follows them up at all times and a collaboration several times a week. I come from a philosophy that is quite different from the one I came up with on the recruiting national team.

– Since I started high school, I have had Ole Morten Iversen and Kristian Skrødal as coaches. Now I came to a very atypical Norwegian coach. Then there will be a cultural difference. It is not to be tucked under a chair.

Peaks and deep valleys

RECRUIT SUCCESS: Harald Østberg Amundsen with the bronze medal after the 15 km freestyle in the WC in Oberstdorf.
Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB

Recruit national team coach Drivenes briefly summarizes the season as characterized by high peaks and deep waves.

At the top are the strong performances of Mathilde Myhrvold in the sprint and not least the slightly sensational WC race of Harald Østberg Amundsen which ended with bronze.

At the same time, he highlights the medals of Iver Tildheim Andersen and Håvard Moseby during the U23 WC as a great achievement.

– There are many who have performed better than I had thought. But there is no doubt that we have had practitioners who delivered below what they can, he says – which thus brings the interview to Jenssen’s criticism.

Working with solution

Drivenes emphasizes that he has not had an individual evaluation with Jenssen yet and wants to hear directly from the Trøndelag man himself regarding the past year. But the recruiting national team coach has given some thought to the follow-up:

– There is a new element that comes into play this year: And it is that there were seven brand new people who joined the team that was created last spring. In such a first-year, it is about creating relationships. Regardless of where I live, I will create relationships with so many new individuals.

– It is a process that does not sit completely from May 2020. But we work actively and look at the possibilities for Trondheim to be a place where the athletes feel they are seen and taken care of. There is a potential that the Norwegian Ski Association has identified and is working on a solution for.

Understanding of Jenssen’s critique

RECRUIT COACH: Torstein Drivenes, pictured here in the spring of 2020.
Photo: Geir Olsen / Geir Olsen

He emphasizes, however, that the association has a close collaboration with the Olympic Summit’s professional resources.

In Trondheim, the athletes have opportunities for both turbine sessions and follow-up on the strength part, he says.

– And Olympiatoppen has a very large presence in Granåsen and Trondheim. But I understand Jan Thomas in what he says that the relationship only really arises by meeting more often than we have done this year. I understand that and we are working for a solution.

– Demanding

When NRK asks if it has been too much with one coach of 12 athletes, Drivenes says that the traditions of such a team have been one coach and one assistant coach.

– Jacob has participated in most gatherings and has run some individual training sessions. The difference compared to previous years is that we are a larger recruiting team. I think it is on the border of what enables an optimal follow-up as we have organized ourselves this year.

– We have experienced it as demanding to cover Lillehammer, Trondheim, Oslo and Drammen. In that sense, it is no secret that we are actively working to strengthen that apparatus, says Drivenes.

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