Leon Thijssen: "The first win isn't always the best!"

Leon Thijssen: "The first win isn't always the best!"

In a candid interview with the Dutch newspaper de Limburger, Leon Thijssen gave an insight into his sporting career. "My own career is now in second place. The children have now priority," says Thijssen. "I've learned over the years that there are other things - than the sport - that are more important. But as a top athlete, you have to dare to be selfish!"

"My wife and I started with 1200 euros when we were 21 years old!" Thijssen says candidly. "I don't care solely about money. Money is important to pay the bills and to afford occasional fun activities. However, it's not everything. My motto? The first win isn't always the best. You don't have to seize victory at the first opportunity; it's often better to wait until its value has increased. You achieve that by working hard!"

Hard work has been ingrained in him from an early age. In order to enter the equestriansport, he started working at thirteen to purchase his first pony. "My uncle owned a riding school in Heijen, and I just had to have a pony! My parents told me to save half, and they would cover the other half. At thirteen,I succeeded, and that's how it all began.

Years of showjumping taught him not to dwell on a problem for too long. "In a Grand Prix, only one person can win," he says. "I used to struggle with losing, but over the years, I've improved. Now I can easily overcome disappointment and move forward. That's what I've learned from my sports career, and I apply it in business as well."

But fortunately, the hard work has already diminished. "In recent years, my children have become more independent. As a result, I can now also enjoy a Sunday at home. Something I would never have done before!"

At home,Thijssen was raised with the motto "Act normal, that's crazy enough."As a result you can make him happy with a cheese sandwich and a cup of coffee.

But Thijssen's happiest moments remain the births of his children...

Source: Limburger.nl