Country: Czech Republic
Profession: Director and agent at Ikaika Sports, a sports marketing and management agency. The agency’s clients include 10k world record holder, Rhonex Kipruto and Vienna City Marathon course record holder, Nancy Kiprop.
What has been a defining moment in your career?
In 2015 I was almost on my way out of the athlete representation business, but then my friend and colleague Zane Branson had a heart attack and passed away in Iten, Kenya. I now had a choice to make about my future. During this time there was such an outpouring of support from people around the world, and the athletes themselves who rallied behind me and the team, that I knew I had to continue and keep Zane’s legacy alive. Now just over 5 years later, I am still here and still building on that same legacy with the same core team. To receive so much care and support, and to be asked so little in return, in this industry, in any industry, that is precious and truly inspiring, and this is what kept us going. Whatever happens next, this experience will remain a career-defining one.
What was the first thought that went through your mind when you heard the Tokyo Olympics had been postponed?
I knew it made sense to postpone the Games, but of course it was a bit difficult to make peace with it initially, because the dream was for me and my two young boys to experience their first Olympics this year, to visit a country I am mesmerised by and to watch athletes shine and reach their goals. I know the dream will happen though, and the hard work already started to make sure our management team and athletes can fulfil their purpose and goals.
What is your greatest extravagance?
Work, lack of rest and sleep, travel and a sweet tooth.
Which superpower would you like to have?
I grew up reading comics, but Asterix and Alan Ford (Roberto Raviola and Luciano Secchi) had the strongest influence on me. I am a Christian (Eastern Orthodox Church), I believe.
With this as a background, I can’t define superpower I would like to have: Healer + Bringing best in people + Ability to forgive + Unconditional love + Stubbornness + Sarcasm and irony. Go figure.
When under pressure, what do you say to yourself to help you get through it?
When I am under pressure, I tend to become very analytical and over focused on details. So, I have had to learn to recognise these red flags and remind myself to slow down, acknowledge the pressure and make a plan on how to deal with it. Going for a walk, praying, lifting weights helps.
What three things you would take with if you had to be stranded on a desert island for a year?
Duck-tape. Notebook with thick cover pages. Multi-pen (gel-based) with as many blue pens as possible making that multi-pen. You are welcome.