Jure Vogelnik said that you were very attached to certain pairs of skis, particularly those you won on. Supposedly he had to come up with all sorts of tricks to repair them and keep them in working order?
The belief at the time was that skis become good after they were used for a while. It was as if after a certain time all the layers of materials merged into a perfectly balanced whole. Not unlike cars in those days, which had to be gently run in for the first few thousand kilometres with finesse. When it became clear which sets of skis worked for me, I only wanted to ski on those. I became very attached to them.
In the mid nineties, just a few years after the end of your career, Elan brought perhaps its greatest innovation to market - the SCX skis. They changed skiing and started the carving revolution. Bojan Križaj compared them to a four wheel drive car. How would you describe your feelings when you tried them?
Even during my career I always strived towards the perfect turn, especially in the giant slalom. You could say I was carving in a way with those two metre plus skis, of course when snow conditions allowed it. I used the tails of the skis and when I managed to bend them, the turns looked much like modern carving. And then the SCX skis came, making true carving possible. I thought they were fantastic. At the time I wished that Elan’s engineers would have come across the solution some ten years earlier, so that I could race on such skis. Carving skis made skiing simpler and more fun, both at the competitive and the amateur level.
It did not go on just for a season or two, but for a decade and a half. How did you manage to maintain your motivation at such a high level?
Well, I have to admit I was not as motivated during the last five seasons. But before that, I always set myself very high goals. I wanted to win races and I wanted to win with as high a margin as possible. Above all, I thought a lot about skiing. For me, it was also a mental game.
Which were you favorite venues?
I enjoyed the classic venues such as Madona di Campiglio, Adelboden, Wengen, Kitzbühel. I really liked racing at home in Sweden, but also in Kranjska Gora where the numerous fans made me feel at home.