World Champion in 50 km Free from Val di Fiemme 2003, bronze medalist in team sprint from Oberstdorf 2005 and bronze medal winner in relay from Vancouver 2010 decided to leave the Czech national team in favor of loppets.
32 year-old skier from Nove Mesto na Morave plans to return to World Cup racing in the 2012/13 season to be able to qualify for the World Championships in Val di Fiemme 2013 and Winter Olympic Games in Sochi one year later.
“I’ve been in the World Cup very long time and I feel I need a change. It will be a challenge and I like challenges very much,” said Koukal to the Czech media. “Koukal will take part in at least to training camps with the Czech national team and will race at the World Cup in Nove Mesto. I want to have overview about his shape,” explained Czech head coach Miroslav Petrasek.