Wednesday, 27 May 2009

World cup - Vienna

Just about to fly out to Vienna(Wien) for the third round of the bouldering world cup, my 2nd of the season. i am hopefull for this one on the back of my last three comps, plus the fact that Britains Jamie Cassidy is the chief route setter, so no excuses about the style of problem.

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

8a onsight

On sunday i onsighted Kleptomania at hollywood bowl (Giggleswick North), my first 8a onsight in the uk, i onsighted 8a in Kalymnos last September.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Three comps....three weekends!

1st up was Rd 2 of the bouldering world cup and my first of the season, i felt strong and fit going into it and training had been going well. Qualifiers were a nerve wracking affair with the field split into 2 groups so the top ten going through from each group. i finished 9th in my group having comfortably flashed 4 out of 5 problems. Semi finals did not go so well, two very wide problems and one that no one looked even close to doing, although that was the one i felt closest to doing! oh well it was good to make the semi's again especially in such a strong field.

Next up was an open international in Kitzbuhel, part of the Austrian cup. I felt bad during the qualifiers, probably down to nerves at the free for all format with as many goes as you liked on the problems! Thankfully i made it through to the semi's the next day. Warming up i felt much better than the previous day, thats what rest days do for you! I proceeded to flash two problems out of the four, good enough to put me in 2nd place and the final. I still felt strong warming up, if a little nervous it only being my 2nd international final. The first problem was the easiest, everyone did it, although not first go, i managed to flash it and felt good and relaxed me a little bit. The 2nd problem was a horrendous pull onto the slab using a razor for one hand only and bad feet. Everyone seemed to have a bad time on this one, i came out brushed the hold and it felt good, the move felt easy, that go, as i dropped the top and could not pull on again! The third problem was another hard one and i knew by the crowds reaction that no one had topped it. A few failled attempts and a quick rest i pulled on with 20 seconds to go, the knee slid perfectly into the knee bar and i grabbed the penultimate hold, but i could feel the familiar friend "pump" setting in and launched for the last hold/volume and to my surprise latched it, i was in the lead.
The final problem came round far too quickly and i knew that i needed it but only had one go left in my arms. I could feel the crowd willing me up it or maybe that was just the small British contingent! i was agonisingly close to latching the last hold, but it was not to be, and i ended up in a slightly disapointing 5th but had great fun getting there. Here's a video of the third problem in the final. There's more videos of the other problems on youtube.

The final comp was the Plywood masters at Boulder UK in Blackburn, I greased through the qualifiers in 2nd, and still felt strong going into the final, were i topped all five problems dropping one once. 2nd was Ned who has not been training too much due to his dissertation, would have been nice to have been a bit closer! Finally i had won something, after far too many 2nds to even mention!