After winning the Bill Farrell Memorial two weeks ago, 2019 World Team member Ryan Mango (Army/WCAP, world no. 6) was among the large group of US Seniors who left the next day for that grand training camp in or around Tbilisi, Georgia (Dusheti, to be more precise).
Originally, Mango was supposed to have been included with Max Nowry (55 kg, Army/WCAP, world no. 5) and Ildar Hafizov (60 kg, Army/WCAP) in the quick Q&A article that went out earlier this week. But, as indicated in that piece, things were a little squirrely in Georgia. Training in and of itself was intense; plus, a few wrestlers were under the weather with some sort of virus (most notably Nowry, who really didn’t get the chance to reap the full benefits of the camp due to his illness’ severity).
But Mango for the most part was able to sidestep the flu and participate. With camp now wrapped up, the two-time defending US National Champion is set to compete tomorrow at the Haparanda Cup in Haparanda, Sweden. Before that happens, he provided answers to a short string of questions pertaining to his time overseas.
Ryan Mango — 60 kg, Army/WCAP
5PM: You’ve had a lot of wrestling the past few months between the Worlds and NYC two weeks ago. Is there a different value in getting overseas for something like this early in the Olympic Year?
Ryan Mango: The goal is always the same, Olympic Year or not, with that being to be the best version of myself every time I step on the mat. The focus for New York, this tour, and onward will be making the new weight (60 kg) as much as possible and creating momentum leading into the (Olympic) Trials.
5PM: The way it had been put to me is that this camp is supposed to be par terre heavy. Has it been that way?
Mango: The camp had its ups and downs with a lot of guys getting sick and all. It was par terre heavy in the first week which was a nice gauge, identifying strong points as well as aspects needing fine-tuning.
5PM: Do you enter a training situation like this — given the time of year and perceived quality of partners — with specific goals in mind?
Mango: Like I said, the goal is always to work towards being the best version of myself every time I compete. With that being said, at WCAP, we are training to win medals, not to just make the Team. With that in mind, this training and perceived quality of partners makes the most sense.
5PM: Despite 60 not presenting a challenging, depleting cut for you, was it encouraging to get a string of matches in New York where you looked dominant?
Ryan Mango: The result was not as encouraging to me as my ability to execute a plan for getting down, recovering, and being ready to compete. That’s what is going to get me the results in April. So if I can find consistency in my weight management, preparation, recovery, and execution, then I will get the results I desire.