Henri Junghaenel – the man behind the medal

Having won an Olympic Quota place for Germany in Baku along with the title of European Champion, we wanted to find out how ELEY shooter Henri junghaenel feels about winning such an accolade and his preparation before the games.


ELEY: How does it feel to become a European Champion and win an Olympic Quota place for your country?

Henri: It’s an overwhelming feeling. This season I was in two out of three finals in the World Cups and was fairly close to getting an Olympic Quota place, but it just wasn’t close enough. I started to doubt myself; am I doing everything as well as I can, or am I doing something wrong?  However, all doubts vanished in Baku, I was calm, relaxed, focused and ready to have fun. Winning an Olympic Quota place in the 1st European Games, was just perfect.

ELEY: What equipment are you currently using?

Henri: I’m using a Walther KK 300, Thune gear (jacket, pants, gloves and shoes) and of course I am shooting with batch selected ELEY tenex =)

ELEY: Have you changed anything this year?

Henri: I actually tried a new barrel this year. I thought it was going to be slightly better than my old one but  competition results didn’t back this up and so I went back to my “old” barrel a couple of days before the European Games. From the results, it was a smart move.

ELEY: How have you been preparing for competitions this year?

Henri: I did a lot of testing. I tried new gear and a lot of other stuff at the end 2014 and into January 2015. As I’m still in at University, I had exams throughout February. I started quite late with small-bore training, beginning at the end of February. From that point on, I did as much as I could possibly do. I did find that although my Prone was quite good my 3P definitely suffered because of the late start to training.

ELEY: What do you eat a week before an important competition?

Henri: My normal breakfast consists of a slice of bread or muesli/oatmeal, as they’re slow release carbohydrates, which keep my energy levels regulated throughout training and in competitions. As a shooter I don’t want to eat sugary cereals as my energy levels would plummet whist competing.  I often eat a piece fruit and have a cup of coffee with my toast or oatmeal.

ELEY: What do you eat the morning before a competition?

Henri: I don't usually make any changes on competition day to a normal as I don’t want to worry about anything different or anything going wrong i.e. getting an upset stomach. In Baku I had oatmeal with a banana sliced in, orange juice and my usual cup of coffee, without any additional sugar.

ELEY: What additional training are you doing?

Henri: Additional training other than shooting is really important both for the mind and body and so I go running three times a week. In addition to running, I like to have a good shooting/life balance and I try to play Squash once a week with a friend. I also do core exercises every other day for further strength and stability.

ELEY: What is the best advice you can give to a new shooter?

Henri: Have fun in what you’re doing. If you’re not enjoying it, you won’t perform your best.

Many thanks to Henri for this interview. We’re sure after reading this, shooters across the world will be getting their running shoes on and making time to play other sports with friends.