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In climbing I do things that I enjoy and want to do not the ones that are currently in fashion.
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World Championships 2012
Jakob Schubert claims the World Champion title !!

Today, the Bercy Arena in Paris was just bursting at the seams as Sunday’s competition program included four long awaited finals. It all started with the final round of the Women’s Bouldering (check out the coverage) then progressed to the third Paraclimbing final to eventually end with Men’s Lead and Speed. The fans of lead climbing expected a great show as the final six included brightest stars of the current lead competition scene out of which there were at least five serious candidates to the World Champion title.

The Men’s final route ran similarly to the yesterday’s line set for the women. It was said that its grade oscillated somewhere around 8c to 8c+. It consisted of 55 holds put into four distinctive parts. The route began with sloppy holds leading to a butterfly-like set up features and went slightly to the right along the overhanging full of blue volumes. There, the first crux section was located. It was powerful enough to eliminate Hyunbin Min of Korea and one of the favorites, representing Japan, Sachi Amma. The audience held its breath as the Japanese unexpectedly fell off the wall after making everyone comfortable with his fluid and solid way of climbing. Amma looked like he himself couldn’t tell what had just happened and as he reached the ground with a grimace of disappointment on his face, he stared at the wall scratching his head in disbelief. The same point of the wall was reached by Romain Desgranges. The host’s representative who has had a difficult competition season so far, is claimed to have serious problems with establishing the right mindset during comps. The rumour has it that before the World Championships the French National Team members were even sent to a special camp where they were forbidden to use mobile phones or computers. The one week lasting camp was a total break from climbing and was fully devoted to the improvement of athletes’ mental strength and breathing techniques. Seemed like it did not help Romain that much as he nervously managed to do only five more moves and fell while reaching the first pocket of the roof. Hopefully, the French will soon be able to overcome his weakness.

 

Romain Desgranges approaching the first crux section (photo: IFSC)


A finalist who managed to wade through the first crux sequence reached the 3rd section of the route – the roof. Here the difficulty was based on a short traverse leading from one pocket to another, which required the athlete to go down a little bit in order to grab the holds on red pyramid volumes. Sounds tricky? The first competitor who had a right beta for this section was simultaneously the first finalist to climb the route – Jorg Verhoeven of Netherlands. He actually was really close to get out of the roof but eventually had do make do with the 38+ result.

The roof and what came after it were altogether considered a bouldering-orientated part of the line. The roof’s end was where „the snake” started. It consisted of smaller pyramid volumes set up in a shape reminding of the reptile. As an athlete progressed from one volume to another the holds got smaller and smaller. The middle part of the snake was reached by Adam Ondra who’d decided to devote this year’s season solely to outdoor climbing with the exception of World Championships. It was visible that the Czech had got out of the habit of climbing indoors and he did not hide his disappointment. As it turned out later on, the 41 hold was enough to win the bronze medal.

The time came for Sean McColl and Jakob Schubert. Both exceptionally strong and determined. Both succeeded in going above the snake. The Canadian looked much more confident than during yesterday’s bouldering semi-finals but it seemed like eventually the tiredness took its toll. McColl almost grabbed the 48 hold while the Austrian fell off only 3 moves away from the top!!

Everyone was waiting for Ramón Julian to come out and do what his rivals weren’t capable of – send the route. Eventually, he was the only one to top out the semi-final line. The Spaniard at first looked really controlled but things were gradually getting worse as he began to have some problems with body positions and even clipping. Ramón reached the roof and… messed it up completely. The defending Champion approached the red volumes and came back to the good pocket at the beginning of the roof several times. Adam Pustelnik, the chief routesetter of the lead events, could not find the words that would have appropriately described what he was watching at  at that moment. “I don’t know what’s happening” he commented as the Spaniard was flouncing to and fro losing his strength. Finally, Ramón gave up handing over the title to Jakob Schubert.

 

The Men's Lead podium - Sean McColl, Jakob Schubert and Adam Ondra
(photo:
IFSC)

If you don’t believe what’s written (because it took quite a long time for all of us to  recover after Ramón’s performance) here check out the video report available on the IFSC youtube channel.

Complete results: http://www.ifsc-climbing.org/index.php?page_name=resultservice&comp=1439&cat=ICC_MB

 
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