Felix Loch is aiming to retain his title in Sochi in 2014
Germany’s Felix Loch became the youngest Olympic luge champion when he claimed gold in Vancouver at the age of 20. Now, the four-time world champion is aiming to retain his title in Sochi in 2014 and speaks to the Olympic Review.
"In luge, you need a great understanding of physics to be able to identify and properly assess important factors during each run. For example, the influence of the G-forces – the load acting on my body due to the velocity and the strong change in direction. You also need a certain feeling for your sled, which fits you perfectly after months of preparation".
"Height is definitely an advantage. I am 1.91m tall and weigh 95kg. Put simply, the heavier you are, the faster you are at the finish. It’s good if you have long arms, so you have better leverage while pulling at the start block. You have to be very fast at the start, because then you are in a good position to lead until the finish".
"Because one run only takes about a minute, I must have high levels of concentration. Of course, this is not always easy. The external pressure is sometimes very high, plus I add pressure on myself as well. Like any athlete, I want to give my best to win, so the demands are very high. You have to find a way to block all these influences out, both before and during the race. Directly before the race I go into a “mental tunnel” – I will just focus on myself and blank everything else out".
"In summer I like to ride my old scooter or play golf with my friends. For me, this means I can relax and not think about luge or training. Going out with my family and friends is the best way to regain energy for the upcoming challenges. We go to the cinema, have dinner at a friend’s house or just watch DVDs".
"The most important piece of equipment is my sled, which has been carefully prepared by my trainer and myself. We spend countless hours, especially in summer, to prepare the sled in the best possible way. In addition, you need a racing suit, special shoes, and a helmet with a visor. You also need gloves with spikes to build up speed quickly at the start".
"Just before the start, I try to remember the tricky sections of the track. I try to think carefully about all the sections I had problems at during the training runs".
"I like to listen to music. While I’m preparing my sled at the garage or during training, I listen to many different types of music. My favourite artists are Sportfreunde Stiller, Billy Talent, First Class Ticket and Millencolin".
"Fortunately, I don’t have to think too carefully about my diet. Of course, I try to live healthily – salads, pasta or wholegrain products are perfect for my daily workout. Here in Bavaria we love to eat traditional Bavarian dishes, such as roast pork with dumplings and red cabbage. On the weekends, I look forward to relaxed evenings eating pizza with my friends".
"I joined Facebook to stay in touch with my family and friends at home. It’s great to post news or pictures when I’m travelling all over the world, so I can keep everybody up to date in the best possible way".
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