A young athlete on the road to Nordic success: Witta Walcher
The young cross-country skiing talent Witta Walcher is on the road to Nordic success and is working ambitiously and determinedly towards her lofty goals. A lot has changed this summer for the young athlete. She recently became a pupil at the Nordic elite school in Lillehammer in Norway and the Olympiaregion Seefeld has also become one of her new training facilities. We talked to her about her new home in the north, her goals and of course about the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships 2019 in Seefeld.
Sport is in her blood
Witta has Nordic sports in her blood. Her parents Maria Theurl-Walcher and Armin Walcher are successful cross-country skiers and she experienced cross-country skiing through them as she grew up. It is only natural that Witta should follow in her parents’ footsteps. In summer 2018 Witta took the big decision to swap her home in Austria for Norway. There she attends the Skigymnasium NTG Lillehammer and trains alongside young Norwegian talents. “The beginning in Norway went very well,” says Witta. “I am happy to be able to train together with so many other talented youngsters.”
Witta’s great role model is the cross-country skier Jessica Diggins. “She is able to strain herself incredibly at every race and is always pushing her limits. She has unbelievable willpower. She also has an astoundingly positive charisma and is always cheerful.”
Witta aims to show this kind of ambition and willpower in training as well. She has set herself great goals. Her target for the coming season is to do her best in the NorgesCup. “At best I would like to finish the season in the top three,” she says. The main goal for this season is the EYOF (European Youth Olympics Festival) in Sarajevo. Here she wants to make it into the top ten.
Tough training in beautiful surroundings
The young cross-country skier also has ideal training conditions in Austria. This year she has explored the Olympiaregion Seefeld as a new training region. The Olympiaregion also sponsors and supports her as she aims to reach her goals. This year’s training sessions on the new ski roller track in Seefeld meant that she got to know the region better in summer as well. “When I think of Seefeld, I think of three things: perfect training opportunities, professionalism and top performance,” says Witta. She appreciates the nature around the course, the extent of the cross-country ski runs and the new, ultra-modern facilities. Seefeld will also host the 2019 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships, making it an absolute sporting highlight for all Nordic athletes and fans.
A home World Championships
A world championship at home is something special and unique. The best Nordic athletes in the world are coming to Seefeld to compete. Witta is counting down the days until the starting signal. “I expect exciting competitions and a cool atmosphere from the World Cup during the whole time”, she says, “and hopefully many Austrian medals”.
A home World Cup: motivation for young talent
For the young athletes, a home World Championships is a unique opportunity to experience their role models live and to get a taste of the World Championship feeling. “It’s a great motivation for me to be able to experience all the successful athletes up close,” says Witta. “It makes you work even harder to be able to compete at the same level as well. And I think it’s also a sign of solidarity, because all Nordic sports work towards a common goal.”
We wish Witta all the best for her training and the upcoming season.
You are also counting down the days on the #roadtoseefeld2019? Find all information about the FIS Nordic World Ski Championships here!
Fotos: Thomas Steinlechner