WOLF — As a professional, does fear still play a part when you’re standing at the top of the ramp waiting for a really important jump?
SCHMITT — Over time it becomes a routine, but even after all those years you still ask yourself if you really want to do this. If you look at it objectively, you are not putting your body under that much physical strain at that moment, but even so your heart rate can go up to 150 bpm.
WOLF — Do you manage to keep that fear under control?
SCHMITT — Yes. Ultimately, you have to feel that you are on top of the situation. When you are preparing yourself mentally for a jump, you have to ask yourself whether your fear is justified. That’s when it can help to look back at key situations in the past. Every victory is a confidence booster. Of course, those kinds of situation don’t just apply to ski jumping. You find them at work, too. Again, the first thing is to check carefully that you have put everything in place that needs to be there for you to succeed. I’m sure that must be the case at ElringKlinger, too.
WOLF — Absolutely! With the advent of electromobility, the automotive industry faces some huge changes, and many are afraid of that. The key factor here, too, is preparation. We commenced with the development of fuel cell components 15 years ago. Eight years ago, we began designing cell connectors for lithium-ion batteries, and we now supply complete battery modules. We have also added lightweight bodywork components to our portfolio. The lower your weight, the more energy-efficient you are, whether you are driving a car fitted with a combustion engine or an electric vehicle. That’s why I am not afraid of the transition that lies ahead, even if it is coming a lot faster than we anticipated just three years ago.
SCHMITT — Weight is a crucial factor in our sport, too. The rules state that lighter skiers have to use shorter skis. This leaves them with a smaller surface to generate lift. Even so, there is an advantage. Newly developed ski bindings have made a difference, as they allow the jumper to assume flight positions that are more favorable in aerodynamic terms. Overall, however, the rules have become much stricter over the last few decades and there is less regulatory leeway.
WOLF — That applies to us, too. Stricter limits on average fleet CO2 emissions put car makers under greater pressure to sell as many electric vehicles as possible very quickly, especially given that the market share of diesels is still declining. The limits currently being discussed for 2025 and 2030 cannot be achieved without a significant proportion of CO2-free drive concepts.