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Date of birth:

3rd March 1993

Results highlights:

Olympic Games: 3rd K2 1000 & 5th K1 1000 Tokio 2020; 2nd K1 1000 & 3rd K4 1000 Rio 2016; 3rd K4 1000 London 2012

World Championships: 1st K1 500 Halifax 2022; 2nd K1 1000 Szeged 2019; 1st K1 500 & 3rd K1 1000 Montemor 2018; 1st K1 500 & 3rd K1 1000 Racice 2017; 2nd K1 1000 & 3rd K4 1000 Milan 2015; 1st K1 1000 & 1st K4 1000 Moscow 2014; 2nd K4 1000 Duisburg 2013

European Championships: 1st K1 500 Belgrade 2018; 1st K4 1000 Racice 2015; 1st K4 1000 Brandemburg 2014; 1st K4 1000 & 3rd K1 1000 Montemor 2013

Who is/was your canoeing idol?

Anders Gustafsson, Kenny Wallace and Max Hoff.

What’s your favorite distance and training?

K1 500m. My favorite training is 4 x 250m over 250.

Favorite paddle and boat?

Paddle Gut. Boat Nelo Moskito.

Do you have a motivation song?

Yes! Empire State of Mind by JAY-Z ft Alicia Keys

Could you give any advice for beginners?

Yes, it is all about passion.

Apart from physical training, do you have mental training scheduled in your routine?

No, I don’t have any mental training.

How do you manage to keep calm before and during a competition?

I can’t really keep calm. I am focused and a little bit crazy.

What is a normal day like as a professional paddler?

Train hard, enjoy the little free time I have and do some stuff for marketing.

What are your hobbies apart from sport? What other activities are part from your routine?

My hobbies are Fly fishing, fishing, playing the guitar and SoMe.

Is there a place you enjoy the most training? Why? And for competition?

For training it’s Kadan, basically because it is close to some good fishing spots. For competition, my favorite place is Racice.

Is there and athlete you enjoy the most training with?

My coach. He is funny.

You’ve been in London 2012, Rio 2016 and Tokio 2020 Olympic Games winning 4 medals, but no Gold Medal. What are you expectations for Paris 2024? Are you dreaming with the Gold?

I have always been dreaming with the Gold, but I also dream of inspiring youngsters to have passion, and not just to our sport. Of course, any medal from Paris would be nice.

We could say you’re commonly known as a 1000 meters specialist. How do you feel about the change of the K2 and K4 to the half kilometer in the Olympic Program?

I would prefer the K1 in 500m and team boats in 1000.

And what would you feel about a change to 500 meters in K1?

That would be just great.

One of the most famous images about you is when you stood up a Starting Block in a False Start. Could you explain how did you manage to do that?

My first stroke was a little bit too powerful and my nose just slipped on the starting machine. It happens mostly to k4.

What are your objectives for this season?

I would love to come back in better shape that last season. It was not bad, but full of stress.

Thank you Josef and good luck in this season!