NIVELCO Magazine // 2017/2
INTERVIEW WITH THE SZOLLOS SIBLINGS
NIVELCO SE's young ski racers are introduced
When was your first race?
Benjamin Szollos: – When I was 3 years old – said Benjamin Szollos, racer of NIVELCO SE, who will have his 21th birthday on 27th October.
Barnabas Szollos: – We started skiing around the same time, maybe I was a little younger – mentioned Benjamin’s brother, Barnabas, who will be 19 years old in December, and is also racing for NIVELCO SE.
Noa Szollos: – I was very young when I first put on skis because my brothers were already skiing and competing, and I definitely wanted to catch up with them. Noa will be 15 in February and is the third NIVELCO SE racer.
So you haven’t waited much for it.
Benjamin Szollos: – As soon as I got skis under my feet I started racing. Of course rarely in Hungary, but mostly in Austria.
Was skiing obligatory?
Barnabas Szollos: – Definitely! Our Dad taught us a lot and because he is a skicoach, we haven’t had much of a choice in choosing a sport.
Noa Szollos: – It was natural to me that we were much on the slopes. I like the cold and the beautiful snowy landscape.
Benjamin Szollos: – The background and the opportunity was given, there was no doubt which sport we are going to choose but I can speak on behalf of myself, my brother, and our sister Noa, that we are more than happy about it. We also tried out different kind of sports, and still can enjoy them as hobbies.
For example, what other sports have you tried?
Benjamin Szollos: – Tennis, windsurfing, running, cycling. I do these mainly but I’m not playing as much tennis as I used to play.
Barnabas Szollos: – We used to play together but nowadays I prefer cycling and working out. I love skiing but sometimes it’s good not to do the same thing every day. On the other hand, both hobbies are really good for training also physical fitness and stamina are needed during races when we are skiing downhills at high-speed, and maneuvering between gates.
By the way, I participated in bike races which I loved, because I finished in top 30 out of 80 participants. But this doesn’t mean that I’m going to switch sports. I will stay with skiing.
Szollos Noa: – I like horse riding and playing tennis,but as a complementary sport I've been doing ground acrobatics and athletics as well. This summer I got acquainted with a different kind of sport, I managed to get my advanced diving exam and during the dive we met with turtles, dolphins and sharks.
Which event is your favourite?
Barnabas Szollos: – Let’s see, maybe slalom. That is my strongest event but I’ve tried Super G and I liked it so we will see. The most important thing is improvement because I have a lot to learn, and I’m still young. I know I have to improve my strength, stamina and technique.
Benjamin Szollos: – My favorite events are slalom and giant slalom because technique is the most important in them.
Noa Szollos: – Super G skies is my favorite because. When I first stood on SG ski, I fell in love with them and felt the speed that they could achieve. For the time being, I compete only rarely at those events so Giant Slalom is my other favorite.
How’s life in Lower Austria?
Benjamin Szollos: – Waidhofen an der Ybbs feels like my second home. This year I will do my final exam at the Academy of Commerce, but before this I spent my primary school years going to a Hungarian and Austrian school at the same time. Also, I will take the final exam in German. By the way, this school is excellent for both studying and skiing, all the opportunities are given for improvement. From mid-December to Easter, so during racing season there is no school what means that we can concentrate on training and racing which makes our lives easier.
Barnabas Szollos: – We are running the household independently, our parents live in Hungary and support us from there but we really love being here. Teachers, coaches, and the school are all for us students, it’s not a problem at all if someone comes from a different country. They help us to fit in and give us the maximum support of being good skiers, although we do not get the glory for them.
Noa Szollos: – I started school in Waidhofen this year and I really like this life. I live in a dormitory at the moment, and the community is very good. The school is exhausting because we are in all day long but soon the snowy training will start and we have to learn absorbedly until then.
How satisfied are you with your previous season?
Barnabas Szollos: – Usually, we participate in forty races a year, but the winter season was a little more difficult for me because in mid-December I broke my collarbone at a training session, so I was forced to take six weeks of. At the same time, I feel that overall this was not a bad season, I developed a lot in the faster events and I could improve on my points as well.
Benjamin Szollos: – I'm also happy with last season, which was very important for the Winter Olympics because the points we collect are already counted in the qualifier. Both of us were successful in SG and downhill races. We have developed a lot technically and improved our FIS points as well, so we managed to reach the „A” qualification level for the Winter Olympics next year.
Noa Szollos: – As an adolescent sophomore, I ended my most successful season and said goodbye to the winter of 2016/17 with lots of nice cups and memories. I also managed to stand at the top of the podium in international adolescent competitions several times; in Canada they even played the Hungarian Hymn for me which was a fantastic experience and a great honour. I hope my teachers and coaches were also satisfied with me and I will be able to prove in the new school this year that it is worth to invest in a Hungarian skier.
How did the season 2017/18 start?
Barnabas Szollos: – Fantastically. We spent two weeks in Norway at the beginning of the summer where we managed to train together with the ski team of Lower Austria and during the rest of the summer we did strength trainings. This year we had time for a family holiday as well. We spent one week diving in Egypt seeing turtles, dolphins and sharks, because our family vacations are also active. This one week was amazing but summer is over and I finally can go skiing to the Mölltal glacier; luckily the snow conditions are pretty good now.
How much do you help each other? And what is it like to race against each other as brothers?
Noa Szollos: – For me it is a huge help training together with my brothers. Others must find the chance to learn from better skiers, for example to train with world champions and I have this possibility available so I try to profit from it as much as possible.
Benjamin Szollos: – Skiing is an individual sport so the training is usually solo too, of course with the coach. Because our physique is different we train also differently, so we can’t even prepare together all the time. But sometimes, for example, during snowy trainings we slide together, sometimes even teasing each other. Only the results can decide though, who is better.
Barnabas Szollos: – Racing is racing, brotherhood doesn’t matter. Both of us wants to win. I’m the younger therefore most of the time I was the slower one but recently I reached better and better positions. I try to squeeze my brother on the training, it hugely motivates me.
What is your main goal in next season?
Noa Szollos: – As I am still growing I get new equipment and longer skis year by year. At the beginning of the season this equipment need to get acquainted and skied with, so that when the competitions start the ski would slide well. I hope that the season before me will be at least as successful as the previous one was and then I will be satisfied with my work.
Benjamin Szollos: – There are two major tasks ahead of me, first to graduate in Austria, and then getting to the Olympics in February. That’s my biggest dream, to get to the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games. It’s a feasible task but I have a lot of work to do.
Barnabas Szollos: – The next year will be about the Olympics, and I really want to qualify for it. The best would be if both of us could qualify and we could represent Hungary in South-Korea. We would be the happiest ones. And, of course, our Dad.
NIVELCO Magazine // 2017/1
A cikk itt magyarul is elolvasható.
The NIVELCO Racing Team racers in the TOP 200!
She participated in only one event in the Hungarian Championship, and she won it. These results were no surprise, because we were used to these results as she was part of the top skiers of her age group. Noa took part in races by International Ski Federation (FIS) for the first time where as a member of the Hungarian National Team, she achieved results never seen before!
Right in the first race at the end of January, in Andorra, she stood on the top of the podium, and she stayed on the podium for the next four races. In Trofeu Borrufa 2017 – which is the most prestigious competition of her age group – she achieved the following results:
The highlight of the 2016/2017 season was the Whistler Cup in April. The Whistler Cup is the biggest event for young racers before they’re eligible to compete in the World Cup or the Olympics. This year marks the Whistler Cup’s 25th anniversary and it hosted more than 440 athletes from 23 different countries across the globe, making it the largest youth ski racing event in North America.
We are proud that as members of the NIVELCO Racing Team, Benjamin Szőllős and Barnabas Szőllős received scholarship by the International Olympic Committee, they are leading the world ranking in the Hungarian male section, and are excitedly waiting for the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.