Darya Domracheva who is often called « Dasha » by her competitors, medias and fans was born in Minsk 3 august 1986, now the capital of Belarus. When she was four her parents moved to Nyagan. It is a little town near Khanty-Mansiysk in Russia. Her parents are architects. She started skiing when she was six with cross-country skiing in 1992 but switched to biathlon quickly. Nyagan was at its infancy then and there were few choices.
Sport was a way to let off steam for her. She said: « I‘ve always been excited about sports. When I saw skis, my eyes began to sparkle, just as other children‘s eyes did when seeing toys. I had a lot of energy as a child and I had to let it out. I was hard to contain. » When the biathlon school was opened in Nyagan in 1999 she went there and started with biathlon.
Darya concentrated a lot on studying in school. Only at university did she get into competitive sports. At university in Tyumen she was studying Sports Management, from 2002 until 2003. Then her family moved back to Minsk. In Minsk they did not have a faculty of Sports Management, so she had to change to studying Tourism Management. In 2009 she was writing her diploma thesis on the subject: Advertising in the tourism industry.
Some quotes from Dasha :
She laughed when recalling her first Youth competitions in Khanty Mansiysk as a 13 year old. “My shooting was very very bad! That first competition was a Sprint and I did seven penalty laps. In some Sprints after that, I think I had nine or even ten.” Of course, there was a good reason that the novice Domracheva was an erratic shot. “My city had just started a biathlon school and we did not shoot very often, maybe one day and then not again for a month; there were always problems with rifles and ammunition in those first days.”
She generously gives the credit to the Belarusian shooting coach. “Klaus Siebert is one of the best specialists in the world in biathlon shooting. He is confident in his work and we feel the confidence that he gives us. When things do not go well, he tells me to look forward. So on the next start, I forget about what happened and think about the next race.”
And here is an interview (from 2011) of Darya Domracheva during the E.ON IBU World Cup Biathlon 3 in Hochfilzen, Austria In the relaxed setting of the lounge at the Reideralm Hotel, she talks about her life, dreams for others and a special hero.