Coaches and experts praise Otto Invenius, who became Finland’s number one player: “He won’t settle for a half-wooler” | Sport

Coaches and experts praise Otto Invenius who became Finlands number

Otto Invenius has shot over the past few weeks as the number one cannon among Finnish biathletes. The 23-year-old athlete of Soisalon Biathlon has delighted the public with his good results, but also with his refreshingly confident statements.

– These are still not the places where I want to be, Invenius stated after achieving the best results of his career at the Anterselva World Cup.

– I expect that there will be even better ones.

Invenius has improved what it does above all on the shooting bench, where the success rates have increased dramatically. Invenius has found an effective way to concentrate on race mornings in a slightly different activity: playing console games.

– In biathlon, timing is important in shooting. Eye and finger must play well together. Otto has gotten his timing better, so playing “pleika” seems to be paying off, Urheilu’s expert Kaisa Mäkäräinen recently stated in Urheilustudio.

Invenius was successful before the World Cup in both the Anterselva and Ruhpolding World Cups. In Mäkäräinen’s opinion, the best thing was that Invenius never shot more than one penalty from the same shooting spot in those games.

– The raising of the level has been huge in that he is able to do such a sure shooting performance from one race to the next, Mäkäräinen reminded.

You can expect anything

Sports coach of the Finnish national biathlon team Aku Moilanen has been very satisfied with the results of Invenius. Invenius has already shown his level in training, but now the good mood has been realized in results in competitions.

– If he is able to hunt for these same positions in the World Championships, then you have to be very satisfied, Moilanen said in Anterselva.

Invenius himself shot in an interview with Urheilu that he is even in medal condition if everything goes well.

– You can expect anything from me, he said with a laugh.

– I hope I could get closer to the group of six. It would be great to get into bloom.

In Moilanen’s opinion, the athlete’s goal has not been pulled out of a hat, because the Invenius Games have not yet been perfect, although they have been good.

– When a race like this happens, everything is possible. But we proceed according to the averages, and when he shoots at his own good level, these are the positions we go for, Moilanen said, referring to Invenius Anterselva’s 10th and 11th place.

Not satisfied with half wool

Norwegian head coach of the national team Erik Kulstad has praised his protégé as the hungriest athlete at the moment. Kulstad has been satisfied with how Invenius is ready to adapt and try new things.

Kulstad also thinks that anything can be expected from Invenius at the World Championships. That’s how much self-confidence a young person currently has.

Invenius himself admits that he has a will to win. He has worked hard, so he wants to make a result. This will to win is also signed by the coaches of the national team.

– At full throttle, that’s how he works. When you are a hungry athlete and ready to learn everything, there will be development, said Kulstad.

– Otto is extremely competitive. He doesn’t settle for anything half-hearted. If the job is to be done, then it is done to the full and everything is in play, Moilanen stated.

Sprint features, not calf fitness

Last season, Invenius was 23rd in the sprint race and 41st in the pursuit at the upcoming World Championship tracks. He had a good time on the race tracks in Nove Mesto, because the track profile does not include steep, long climbs.

– For me, the shorter the distance, the better. There are so many sprint features, there is not that much good calf condition, Invenius admitted.

Kaisa Mäkäräinen characterizes the World Championship tracks as rally tracks with many curves, many climbs, and where Invenius can use one of its strengths: Wassberg technology.

– It creates a good feeling when going to the World Championships, when you know that there are tracks there that you like, Mäkäräinen said with his experience of 15 prestigious competitions.

Looking ahead, Finland’s greatest chances of success are in the men’s relay and the mixed pairs relay, in which Invenius and Suvi Minkkinen gave a good performance in Anterselva by finishing sixth. It was Invenius’ first pair relay competition.

In Kaisa Mäkäräinen’s opinion, the men’s individual competition can also be shaken.

– Otto has been on the rise all along. And not forgotten Tero Seppälä too yet. Last year, after difficulties, Tero was able to come to the World Championships well, Mäkäräinen said, referring to the joint start of the Haapajärvi Kiiloje athletes instead of tenth.

Otto Invenius’ best results of the season in the World Cup

Season 2021–22:
55th in the Oslo sprint race, 48th in the pursuit

Season 2022–23:
23rd of the Nove Mesto sprint race
12th in the Oslo sprint race, 22nd in the pursuit

Season 2023–24:
Ruhpolding’s chase 18:s
11th in the Anterselva normal race, 10th in the joint start

29 World Cup starts.