World Cup Report: Atlanta, Georgia

posted by dpm on 10/04/2012

When the lead climbing World Cup kicked off on Saturday, September 29th, the energy at Stone Summit in Atlanta, Georgia was high. Almost a quarter of the competitors were North American. Some of the favorites entering this year’s only World Cup on US soil for the men were Ramon Julian Puigblanque, Jakob Schubert, Sachi Amma, Jorg VerHoeven, Magnus Midtboe and Romain Desgranges. The favorites for the women coming into the event were Johanna Ernst, Jain Kim, Mina Markovic, Chelsea Rude, Mathilde Soderland and Maja Vidmar. To say the least the favorites this year did not disappoint.

Semi-finals made the separation of climbers clear with Johanna, Jain, Mina and Maja all placing in the top 8 for females and moving onto finals. HélèneJanicot of France ended up being the only female to top out the semi finals route for the women. Chelsea Rude seemed to have had a slight technical error and slipped below the upper crux knocking her out of finals contention. As for the men, no one sent the only semi-finals route. The two that obtained the high point on the route were Ramón, and Romain with Jakob, Sachi and Sean all coming in with a tie for the fourth spot. Domean Skofic, from Slovenia, was able to control the 54th hold snagging the 7th spot in the finals line up.

Going into Finals on Sunday evening, a show was in order as the men’s running order was Mario Lechner, Jorg VerHoeven, Domen Skofic, Jakob Schubert, Sean McColl, Sachi Amma, Ramón Julian Puigblanque, and Romain Desgranges. The women's running order was: Dinara Fakhridinova, Katharina Posch, Mina Markovic, Johanna Ernst, Seuran Han, Maja Vidmar, Jain Kim, Hélène Janicot.

Mario Lechner and Jorg VerHoeven came out of the gate swinging and jumped a couple spots in the standing as they reached into the final crux of the route and gained control of the 66th+ hold. Coming in at 3rd and 4th was Romain Desgranges and Sachi Amma, respectively, tied as they both gained a few holds above Mario and Jorg at the 70th+ hold. To break this tie, it went back to semi-finals, as Romain was able to move a little further on the route than Sachi knocking Sachi off the podium and clinching the third spot. Ramón seemed to get a little redemption from last year's World Cup at Movement Climbing & Fitness in Boulder, Colorado when he edged out Jakob for top honors. Both Ramón and Jakob flashed the final route with the tiebreaker being decided by one hold in the semi-finals. The top finishers for the Men’s Lead World Cup in Atlanta were Ramón Julian Puigblanque, Jakob Schubert, and Romain Desgranges.

Hélène Janicot came into finals with high hopes and the top spot. Climbing into the upper crux of the route, Hélène tried making a tough clip and couldn’t make it. She tried to climb through to better holds and couldn’t muster up the strength to clip. Dropping from the number one spot coming into finals, Hélène ended up sixth and out of podium range. The next three in standings, Katharina, Johanna and Maja, were all separated by a maximum of three holds. Maja took the high point between the three and ended up on the podium with bronze in third place. Mina and Jain both climbed smoothly through the upper crux along volumes to one final push to the finish. Neither could complete the route and ended up in a tie at the 70+ hold. Once again, the tiebreaker went back to semi-finals siding with Jain as she had smoothly climbed to the 49th+ hold, only inches away from sending the route. The top three finishers in the women’s category were Jain Kim, Mina Markovic, and Maja Vidmar.

Womens winners: Jain Kim (center), Mina Markovic (left), and Maja Vidmar.

As for the Americans, there was a strong showing in semi-finals with 9 competitors making it. This inculded Ben Issac Tresco, Owen Graham, Josh Levin, Noah Ridge, Vasa Vorotnikov, and Brad Weaver for the men. For the women, the list included Kyra Condie, Francesca Metcalf, Chelsea Rude, and Delaney Miller. None of which, unfortunately, made finals.

Mens winners: Ramon Julian Puigblanque (center), Jakob Schubert (left), and Romain Desgranges.

Story and photos by Peter Erard. Follow Peteyphotography on Facebook.

Watch the men's highlight reel here and the women's highlights here.

Clicking on the links below will go to the official IFSC site. 

M E N lead complete result

1.

JULIAN PUIGBLANQUE

Ramón

ESP

2.

SCHUBERT

Jakob

AUT

3.

DESGRANGES

Romain

FRA

4.

AMMA

Sachi

JPN

5.

VERHOEVEN

Jorg

NED

6.

LECHNER

Mario

AUT

7.

MCCOLL

Sean

CAN

8.

SKOFIC

Domen

SLO

 

W O M E N lead complete result

1.

KIM

Jain

KOR

2.

MARKOVIC

Mina

SLO

3.

VIDMAR

Maja

SLO

4.

ERNST

Johanna

AUT

5.

POSCH

Katharina

AUT

6.

JANICOT

Hélène

FRA

7.

FAKHRITDINOVA

Dinara

RUS

8.

HAN

Seuran

KOR