The sea brings peace of mind

VEO is a proud sponsor of Toni Ketelä, a sprint skier from Vaasa. Toni is going for medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Here is his story : his life, values and passions.

Crazy in a positive way

“How am I crazy? I want to see what my body can stand and how far I can push it. Everything I do, I do for the love of skiing. I’ve been doing this since I was 8 years old, and my enthusiasm has only grown over the years. I feel that I still have plenty in reserve – I can still develop in so many ways. That makes me want to challenge myself more and more every year.”

An epiphany

“I first realised I wanted to be a professional skier when I was 18, during the Finnish Championships. I won gold and silver in the same season, with my mother coaching me and my father waxing my skis. That’s when I had my epiphany: imagine what I could do if I put everything into this sport. It was a decisive year.”


”I’ve given up a lot of things because of skiing. I get to spend too little time with my childhood friends, as skiing takes up all my time. But it doesn’t bother me that much, as my personal goals provide so much fulfilment and motivation.”

Hungering for improvment

“Last season was good. And since then, right from the outset in the spring, I’ve managed to maintain last season’s flow in my training for this season. I’ve had really positive vibes throughout summer and autumn. You always hit mental obstacles, but my desire to improve and win finally breaks down all the barriers – sooner or later. My coach, Olli Ohtonen, knows how to keep my training interesting by setting a variety of goals for every day. That helps me get through the tough times.”

“I have to have complete faith in my coach and what we do.”

I do it my way

“Wherever I am – at camps, training or competitions – someone will always say that this‘n’that should be done differently, or that I’m doing so-and-so wrong. There’ll always be someone ready to give you advice, and many people will come to snap decisions without any real background knowledge of things. So you have to be critical about which advice to take and whom to listen to. That’s why I have to have complete faith in my coach and what we do.”

“Heading out to sea with my fishing rod is a complete counterbalance to skiing.”

Leisure-time loves

“If there’s one thing that’s sure to soothe my mind, it’s fishing. Heading out to sea with my fishing rod is a complete counterbalance to skiing. It’s good to let the waves wash away all the unnecessary stress. You can fill your mind with something other than sport.”

High hopes

“In three years’ time, the 2018 Winter Olympics will be held in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and the traditional sprint there is my number-one goal. The 2017 World Championships in Lahti are naturally another high point in my calendar. I’m moving towards my big goal one day at a time – always with passion.”

Toni Ketelä

  • Born: 16 March 1988, Vaasa
  • Profession: Sprint skier
  • Club: IF Minken, Uusikaarlepyy
  • Coach: Olli Ohtonen
  • Goal: Medal at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics
  • Other: VEO is supporting Toni’s Olympic dream

Toni’s gruelling sprint workout in Ylläs

  • 6 x 3 minutes of freestyle skiing
  • at 100% intensity
  • 4-minute recovery interval between sets
  • 6 x 3 minutes of traditional-style skiing
  • at 100% intensity
  • 4-minute recovery interval between sets
  • 7 skiers
  • fastest skier wins

Sprint skiing in numbers

  • Distance: 1.20–1.80 kilometres
  • Time: 3.00–3.50 minutes
  • Pulse rate: almost 200 (max 204)
  • Lactic acid builds up in the leg muscles after one minute
  • Loppukiri vielä 2 minuutin maitohappohiihdon jälkeen