Competition countdown and new sponsors

Posted by Tony Ryan on 04/04/2008
Blackpool climbing towers

Britain's premier lead climbing competition will be held over the weekend of 24-25 May and once again the British Lead Climbing Championships will be held at the Blackpool Towers, one of the nation’s best climbing walls.

The BMC is also proud to announce that the new title sponsor for this years BLCC will be PLANET FEAR.

There’s no charge to spectate and as well as watching Britain’s best competition climbers in action, there’ll be lots of other entertainment for all the family including trade stands, food stalls, have-a-go climbing and even a bouncy castle.

The reigning national champions are:
Senior Male:  Gareth Parry
Senior Female:  Lucy Creamer
Junior Male:  Jonathan Stocking
Junior Female:  Shauna Coxsey

The Planet Fear BLCC uses the same format as the European Youth Series; two routes are climbed by all competitors during the qualification rounds, these are climbed ‘flash’, which means that the routes are demonstrated by the routesetters and the competitors watch the demo and then watch each other climb. The climbing order is changed for the second route to maintain fairness. The climbers who qualify through to the final are put into an isolation zone and the final routes are climbed on-sight.

The basis for ‘scoring’ in the Planet Fear BLCC (and other leading competitions) is fairly simple. The higher up the route the more ‘points’ you gain. Each hold is assigned a score or number. If you touch this hold (e.g. hold 25) then you get credited with '25-'. If you hold this hold you get '25'. If you make progress towards the next hold (but don’t touch it) you get '25+'. The actual ranking for the qualification round is a bit more complicated though, with square roots of the multiple of the ranking from each qualification coming into play.

Time does not have a bearing on the score but there is always a maximum time given by the chief judge in which the climbers must complete the route. If the climber is still climbing when this time period has elapsed (normally 6-8 minutes), they will be asked to stop climbing and their score will be taken from the highest point they reached at the end of the stated time period.

There is no qualification process to gain entry into the Planet Fear BLCC and the competition is open to anyone. So if you fancy your chances, look out for the entry form, which will be available to download from the BMC website soon and can be picked up from climbing walls around the country. We look forward to welcoming new and established competitors to the Planet Fear British Lead Climbing Championships. The juniors are in action on the saturday, and the seniors on the sunday.

The Planet Fear British Lead Climbing Championships kick off a summer of national climbing competitions, all organised by the BMC. The BMC Youth Climbing Series National Final supported by Perkins Slade, takes place on Saturday 28 June at the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena and the British Bouldering Championships will be held on the weekend of 12-13 July at the Cliffhanger outdoor festival in Sheffield.



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