Laura Rogora and Adam Ondra win spectacular lead event
The first climbing event since lock-down fulfilled all its promises. Even if some countries couldn’t send their athletes (Japan, China, USA, Canada,UK…) most of the best climbers in the world were present in the French town located in the Hautes-Alpes. And what a show did they offer to the spectators!
It really started with the semi-finals on Friday on very hard routes which neither the women nor the men would top that night. In fact, most of the women couldn’t go higher than the 26th hold. Only Laura Rogora of Italy would reach as high as 33. The route setters adjusted a bit and Saturday’s finals were just perfect.
Two women managed to reach the top Saturday evening: the well known champion Janja Garnbret from Slovenia and Italy’s young phenom Laura Rogora. The win going to Laura as she climbed higher during the semis. It’s the 19 years old Italian’s first win and podium at a World Cup event. She is also among the two best rock climbers in the world with Angela Eiter as she just completed a 9b in Spain last July and regularly climbs 9a now, even just before and after the competition in Briançon!
To complete the women’s podium, another surprise came from boulder specialist Fanny Gibert of France. It was also the first podium in a lead event for the 27 years old who began her first climbs on the island of La Réunion. In an emotional moment, she dedicated her win to Luce Douady, a teammate who tragically fell from a cliff a couple of months ago.
Young upcomers, Jessica Pilz (AUT) and Vita Lukan (SLO) finish very close behind with 4th and 5th place.
On the men’s side, the competition was tighter between the climbing stars as Jakob Schubert (Austria) and Adam Ondra (Czech Republic) both almost reached the top during the semis and were even at 39+. Following closely were Alex Megos from Germany and Domen Skofic from Slovenia. However, during the final Alex’s foot slipped from too much precipitation (27) in the overhang while Domen managed to go almost to the top (41) and beat Jacob (38+) at the same time.
However, there was one man who would top and who almost made it look easy : Adam Ondra! He was very focused on the last few moves and when he clipped the last draw he exploded in joy, as happy as if it was his first win.
Another Slovenian, Luka Potocar came in fourth while the 16 year old Mejdi Schalck from France impressed with his youthful and instinctive climbing by finishing 7th in his first WC final.
It was a lead event only and it could be the only IFSC lead event this year due to the travel limitations the pandemic is imposing. The public has been wearing masks at all times and was limited in size.
We look forward to more exciting and well organized competitions like this one.
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