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13 March 2018 | in Alpine Skiing, Winter FISU World University Games

#Learning: Pushing limits with Winter Universiade 2019 Alpine Ski test event champ


Alexey Konkov , a 19-year old athlete from the Russian city of Kamtchatka Krai, won the junior Russian downhill event. We caught up the the Winter Universiade 2019 Alpine Ski test event winner to find out the details of how he prepares for top performance.


You won the downhill by one-half second over the second place finisher in the downhill. What helped you to descent with the best result among juniors?


I should thank the one who has prepared well the skis. And finally I think it is more the merit of my coach Kirill Kopylov from the Olympic Reserve School “Moroznaya” than mine. I’m glad it has added up like it was planned. My instructors in Kamchatka, who have guided me from the childhood, hoped very much for the victory and believed in me.


How did you prepare for the Winter Universiade 2019 test event competitions?


In December we were in Magnitogorsk, and the Cup of Russia stages were held there. I had a good training camp in Sakhalin, right in front of the Krasnoyarsk one, and we came here directly from Sakhalin. Of course, the conditions there are not like here. Such a course as you have in "Bobrovy Log", is not prepared anywhere else.


Of course, we also have mountains on Kamchatka. But in terms of infrastructure, we are not so developed. I would invest myself if I have money, I would start to build, but there is not the hard snow that we need in Kamchatka. However, we can train on the snow almost all year round. The snow lies in the mountains up to the end of July and beginning of August.



Which of your sports achievements are you mostly proud of?

 The victors of the Winter Universiade 2019 test event Alpine Ski Downhill event Yulia Pleshkova and Alexey Konkov

Perhaps, I can name the results at the Youth Olympic Games in 2016. My teammate Anastasia Silantieva and I came in second in the team event. Even the medal is special, very different from the awards for the other competitions. And in the same year we were the first in the team event at the Russian championship. These are probably my most significant victories for all time in the sport.


How do you manage to overcome the nervousness at the competitions?

 A female competitor pushes out of the starting house during the giant slalom competition in Krasnoyarsk

Nervousness passes when you gain the experience. I studied with the psychologist in my childhood, I had a sort of a psychological barrier. But now you are more concentrated on the moves, you do not have waste thoughts, you abstract away from everything. There is only you and the course in my mind now.


What are your further sports plans?

 Closing Ceremony for the Alpine Ski test events in Krasnoyarsk

Everyone has the Russian championships in some disciplines in Sakhalin, and then the Russian Cup final in the city of Polarnye Zori in the Murmansk region. And when April comes, the season ends.



Do you want to participate in the Winter Universiade 2019?

 The Krasnoyarsk organisers have been keen to include events-within-the events to engage with fans and future participants

Yes, we are already getting ready for it. It is necessary to begin preparations in advance; it is impossible to be ready in a week. Of course, I hope to participate in the Universiade in Krasnoyarsk. It is convenient that here there are skiing courses within the city limits, there’s no need to go far. By the way, I have read that the tickets for the Winter Universiade 2019 are being sold very quickly. So, people are interested in that.



What can you wish the future participants of the University Sport events like the Winter Universiade? Do you have some kind of theory of success?

The Men's Alpine Ski Downhill podium, with Konkov in the centre position 

It seems to me that sometimes children need to think a little less about sports. We are constantly doing this, sometimes you feel during the training that there is some kind of fatigue. Then you need to talk to the coach about it, we cannot always give 100%, go to bed and wake up with thoughts of skiing. We are not the machines.

But this does not mean that if you are tired, you need to part with sports, or if you lose, then everything is ended. Everyone of us have done a great job, coaches, parents invested a lot of energy in us. Sport is a big work.

While sports are at the centre of the Winter Universiade, the multi-day and multi-sport competition is also a celebration of culture, learning and university life