Interview with Yann Guyader

フランスのレーシングチーム Levallois のホームページに WIC 2008 総合優勝の Yann Guyader のインタビュー記事が掲載されましたが、フランス語のため読めません。その後、Powerslide Racing News に英語訳がアップされたので、それを拝借しました。

Yann Guyader interview

by JvSPowerslide (Nov. 23, 2008)
Yann Guyader: "the desire to win must be the motive for all efforts an athlete undertakes"

Yann Guyader : Champion du monde de Roller


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUwbT0kQqXg

And two championship titles in France to finish in style! Yann Guyader proved in Angers that that he is really the strongest, obtaining national titles in the race against the clock and the marathon. A week before he won the final race of the French Inline Cup in Herbiers (stage victory and overall). Besides his European Championships title, world title, victories at the three tracks race and Gross Gerau international criterium, to add the icing to the cake, he won the overall of the World Inline Cup and Swiss Inline Cup! Lets look back on a simply outstanding season with the best skater of the World in the year 2008!

Hello Yann. We checked the history of skating, and no other skater reached before what you did this season!
This season will actually stay in history for me and also for the inline speedskating, since I am the first to win all these trophies in the same year. However, I will try not too celebrate this too much, as right now I have to prepare me wuith all my energy for the upcoming season. Even when I try to enjoy it at least at this moment, because I do realize that reaching this was unique.

In France, athletes sometimes have difficulty with the word "victory": what does it mean to you?
I think the desire to win, and thus accumulate the most wins possible, must be the reason for all efforts an athlete makes. In France, sadly, we tend to prefer those who could have won, because they worked so hard in the race or let the victory to somebody else for the sake of fairness, over the actual winner. Yet the very principle of competition is the victory, whatever its form, provided that it acquired in compliance with the rules of competition. It is for this reason that, like some other nations, in recent years I have tried to maintain the cult of victory, or even refuse the non victory. At high-level racing the principles of Coubertin, unfortunately, have little value!

There is a tradition of excellent skaters in France: are you inspired by any of them?
Arnaud Gicquel remains the French skater who inspired me the most, for several reasons. First, because he is from the same region as I am and probably the only real star of speedskating at the time I started this sport. Then, because I had the chance to meet with him regularly at the races. But also because we have the same way of skating and the same physical skills.

Adding to the previous question, we imagine that reaching such results, cannot be just coincidence ...
Like at the beginning of each season, many questions remained. I had become part of a new team, and had to get used to my new teammates. On the other hand, we were three leaders and everything was about who would really be THE leader, which was not easy. I therefore did everything to make sure it went best for me: intensive training, I did an enormous effort in the early races of the season in order to secure my leadership in the team, but more importantly I found a real cohesion and determination to win all together in this team.


Winning means attacking, but also means to provoke. You gave this impression: you have adopted a tactic that was out of style in recent years ... Does this mean that speedskating had become a "conservative" sport?
I had no choice, especially if I wanted to have a chance to win as many races as possible. Wait for a sprint finish, early in the season, meant accepting that it would be a victory for my main opponent, Luca Saggiorato - even if I proved during the season that I could win pack sprints in the WIC Engadin in front of Saggiorato and Joey Mantia, and Weinfelden). I therefore decided from the first World Inline Cup of the season to escape. Unfortunately, I fell in Zug and our escape during the course was caught back. But at the second race I got back my smile and I could obtain my first win of the season in WIC. Seeing that this had worked out well, I decided to continue this tactic, the success of which we all know by now.

What has been your strength also this season, is that you have not lost your speed in the sprints. So, are breakaways still your preferred way of racing?
A small group arrival remains my favorite race configuration, since I am one of the few to keep a high speed edge even after a difficult race. Nevertheless, I also was able to win the mass sprint, as in Engadin and Weinfelden, before guys like Mantia and Saggiorato who are nknown to be not exactly slow in this discipline! It is obvious that all the work on speed that I accumulated throughout the year in training, helped me in that. Most of the time I practice this doing flying laps on the track, in groups or alone, according to the will and objectives of the moment. But it can also be trained behind a car to re-create the phenomenon of slip stream that we feel very much in final marathon sprints.

Let us now turn to the future: 2008 was a great season for you, but we also feel that many issues remain outstanding (interest of sponsors for the WIC, evolution of the media coverage of speedskating, market developments). What do you think about all this?
For now, unfortunately I remain a little pessimistic, and this hurts me. I think that what lacks roller, are not the skaters or sponsors, but more the large organizations. I take the example of Berlin: 9000 skaters, 200 000 spectators on the course just for inline skating and a race broadcast live on German national television! This means that our sport has some attraction. You only need to have the means to promote it by grabbing on to large sporting events in particular. It is therefore necessary that more people are able to help us to canvass large organizations, such as ASO, so that we can have the opportunity to present our sport to the general public.

One thing is certain: speaking about technology, the arrival of 110mm showed that innovations were still possible and to improve our sport!
The physical changes are essential to all sports as long as the purpose is not only marketing (clap in roller) and they should have the effect of improving overall performance. I think especially in wheels there were many improvements: a larger diameter but also and above all their mechanical properties (grip and roll) improved, on the track in particular.

To conclude the interview, what can we wish you now?
The best thing I can wish for and that one could wish me, is to continue to have so much fun on my skates, which certainly will lead me to continue to win.
This interview is a translation of the interview published at the website of team Levallois.

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