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Heikki Laitinen at the Biathlon World Cup in Östersund in December 2021. Photo: SAhl / A. Ivanov


Heikki Laitinen in the athlete presentation: A financial expert on his way to the first Olympics

Last winter brought a clear leap in development for Heikki Laitinen. This winter, the goal of an Olympic trip will come true.

At the University of Eastern Finland Heikki Laitisen, who studies in Joensuu, has a life filled with biathlon and studies . Sports are a priority.

“I try to prioritize biathlon even in small daily choices. School is done on the terms of sports," says 27-year-old Laitinen, who represents the Kontiolahti Athletes in the domestic games.

Sometimes balancing is better, sometimes worse.

“Exams and assignments often pile up. I combine them as best I can. The Joensuu Sports Academy helps in combining sports and studies."

Through the IBU Cup to the national team 

Last season, Laitinen got good rankings in the IBU Cup and made it to the national team in the spring. The best IBU cup finish of the season came in March in Obertillach, Austria, where he finished third on a shortened normal distance.

Laitinen emphasizes that an athlete's important goal is to stay healthy. This was successful last season.

"If you get sick or injured, you can't measure your training and fitness."

The Olympic train called

Laitinen, who enjoyed skiing since he was a child, has enjoyed biathlon since childhood. The sport has also become known as a blood inheritance, as Laitinen's father also enjoys biathlon.

Already ten years ago at the Youth Olympics in Seefeld, Austria, Laitinen stated that "isn't that Olympic gold the main goal of every athlete".

The Olympic journey is now coming true, as Finland got a relay team for both women and men. Laitinen is part of the men's foursome.

“I am happy and excited that I get to represent Finland at the Olympics. In terms of Corona, there will definitely be close matches, and you won't be able to watch other sports, if at all."

He also looks at his sports career without concrete competition ranking metrics.

“A kind of goal is that when I finish my career, I can look back on my life and say that I have been able to do my best with the resources and abilities that I have. So that at least you don't end up wondering that you didn't try hard enough."

Finance and investing as snacks

The inspection races at the beginning of the season went great for Laitis, but the first international starts did not go as planned.

"In December, I was in pain quite a lot, and it was really difficult. In January, fortunately, things have gone in the other direction, and the pace has been improving. I hope the direction stays the same and we stay healthy. The goal is to be in better shape at the Olympics than ever before."

Sports and studies fill Laitinen's calendar so closely that he has no other hobbies.

“Except maybe monitoring the economy. I like to follow the economy and investing - it's also kind of a hobby," says Laitinen, who is in his third year studying economics in Joensuu.