How has your season been going so far, are you on track?
I'm on track, that's for sure. When I look back at my two major races, I showed that I still perform at the highest level. I won IRONMAN South Africa in March in a new record time and I finished fifth at IRONMAN Frankfurt in 8 hours, 7 minutes in July with very high temperatures. In the final Kona Pro Ranking I'm in third position, means I performed well over the last 12 months.
How is training for Kona different than training for other races?
I think it's the mindset that is different from any other race. As a triathlete you know you are preparing for the biggest race of the year and automatically focus and training is more intense and focused.
Is there more expectation/pressure on you now after winning in Kona in 2013?
Not really from the outside, I mean sponsors and others. It's me, I want to win it again and experience that magnificent feeling of winning in Kona.
Any new/special products you'll be using in Kona?
COMPRESSPORT USA's Pro R2 Swiss, and CeramicSpeed's OPWS (oversized pulley wheel system).
Who do you think your biggest competition will be this year?
Sebastian Kienle and Jan Frodeno.
Where is your favorite place to race and why?
Kona! It's the World Championship on a mythical course and after winning it in 2013 this has become my favorite and most special place to race!