At the final event of the 2019/20 season in Krasnoyarsk (RUS) Peel grabbed her second victory of the campaign to put the icing on the cake of the most successful season of her career, as the 30-year-old member of the “Flying Kangaroos” team clinched her first aerials World Cup crystal globe. It took Peel almost 10 years of competing on the World Cup tour to finally finish the season on the number one spot. In almost a decade on tour the Aussie skier managed to reach some very impressive milestones including 13 World Cup podiums and four victories, as well as the 2015 FIS World Championships gold medal from Kreischberg (AUT).
FIS - You have worked very hard to earn your first crystal globe this past season. What did this victory mean to you? Also what was going on inside your head when you won the final event in Krasnoyarsk and clinched the World Cup title?
Laura Peel - Winning a crystal globe had been a goal of mine for almost a decade and it came down to the very last event of the 19/20 season. Putting that final jump to my feet in Krasnoyarsk and walking away with a World Cup win and the globe was a combination of relief and pure bliss.
FIS - What made this past campaign so special and what was the decisive factor that drove you to the top of the World Cup ranking?
LP - The 19/20 season was pretty special for me for a couple of reasons. Obviously, I won the globe which has been a career goal for a long time, but I also competed triples for the first time. Hitting the biggest jump is a milestone in any aerialist’s career, being able to compete them at every World Cup event throughout the season and pushing both my physical and mental limits is something that I’m very proud of, and ultimately it paid off!
FIS - Your first start at World Cup was back in 2011. What is the most memorable moment for you in what has been almost 10 years on tour now?
LP - After almost a decade on the World Cup circuit I’ve been lucky enough to reach some pretty cool milestones and create a lot of memories with a lot of great people. Of course, the Olympics will always be special, and my 2015 World Championship win but so far my 19/20 season tops the list, I was jumping the way I had wanted to jump for a long time and will hopefully be able to carry that forward into this season as well!
FIS - Obviously it was an off-season unlike any we’ve ever seen before, with the pandemic going on. What did you do to stay level and stay focused even with everything going on in the world?
LP - Things were definitely very different this off-season. We were lucky enough to squeeze-in our last World Cup event in March before everything got shut down, but after that things looked very different. I went home to Australia where I trained at home while I waited for international borders to open up again, that never really happened, but fortunately I was able to get over to Switzerland to start training with my coach in July. It hasn’t been easy being away from home for so long, but I just try to focus on the bigger picture and keep perspective - we’re very fortunate that we’re able to train and compete this season!
FIS - Going into a new season with World Championships in February, what are your main focus points? Will another crystal globe be on the list of goals? World Championships medal?
LP - Of course going into this season I’d love to walk away with another globe and a World Champs medal, but early on in the season I’m just trying to focus on the process. I hoping to do a new jump this season, so really want to dial in the basics so I can start pushing my DD (Degree of Difficulty).
FIS - What is it that you love most about aerial skiing?
LP - I love that aerial skiing pushes me to my absolute limit, it’s pretty cool to see how far you can go, and usually it’s a lot further than you think. I also love being outside in nature and traveling to some really interesting and amazing places.
ARTICLE COURTESY OF FIS