posted by dpm on 09/28/2008
The Mammut Bouldering Series finished its 08’season August 9th, at the Outdoor Retailer Trade Show in Salt Lake City. The competition drew in hundreds of spectators from all over the country and as many photographers as Britney Spears pantiless exit from her Bentley. Organizer Jason Dansforth, who was dressed like a transgender Steven Tyler impersonator, belted the play by play to the audience, as the women’s field battled their way up four discernibly different routes on the most monstrous bouldering structures ever created.
The women rallied the crowd in the late afternoon heat with dynamic corkscrew movements, tenacious grit, and sportsmanship. Angie Payne and Alex Puccio showed the Utah crowd some Colorado camaraderie by giving each other a high five, after Alex nearly completed the thuggish third problem amidst the hot strobes of photographer’s flashes.
It was evident that competition organizers NE2C placed an emphasis on this comp being BIG: big moves, big walls, big falls, and a big inflatable mammoth from Mammut. This year’s Mammut Championship drew in some competitors noticeable absent from the competition scene in recent years. Lisa Rands, back in the competition scene after competing in both Nationals and the World Cup, had the crowd on their feet to cheer on her dynamic style. Lisa thrutched towards the top of the wall, coming up short on problem one, and leaving room for the next competitor to keep her from a podium spot.
Enter Alex Johnson, a tall, quiet, and unassuming competitor, who has been dominating the plastic scene in recent years. Alex came into finals tied for first with Lisa after impressive flashes of four of the five qualifiers. Alex’s dominance seemed evident on problem 1, as she casually flashed the problem that had thwarted a majority of the strong field of fifteen women, but it was Alex Puccio who won first. Her score narrowly edged out Alex Johnson do to a tie breaking rule that counts the number of attempts as a penalty during the course of the competition.
The first male entered the makeshift arena atop the Shilo Inn Parking Deck as the last women in the field of fifteen moved from problem one. The top men in finales had representation from as far away as France and Japan with many new faces emerging as top players on the scene. In warrior spirit, the men flogged themselves at polyurethane giants made specifically for the Mammut Competition by hold companies So Ill, Etch, Revolution, and Contact. Look out for So Cal young blood Julian Bautista. The 15 year old phenom made it into the finals in the fourth place after qualifiers, and blew the crowd away by taking an early lead in finals. This kid is the one to watch for in the future, but on this day, everyone wanted to see Sharma, as he made quick work of all four problems as the rain began to fall on Salt Lake. The drizzle soaked the walls and the competitors, but the brief delay allowed spectators to refuel on beer and food before the competition resumed. Fired up by the barley and hops, the crowd welcomed climbers Daniel Woods, Ethan Pringle, and Tyler Landman with whoops of encouragement. These last three competitors stepped up to the plate to give the remaining crowd the finale they had anticipated.
Women’s Final Results
Men’s Final Results
For complete results and more photos of the event, check out www.boulderingchampoinships.com.