Fantastic performance from Emily Phillips and the GB Climbing Team at the IFSC Bouldering World Cup in Munich last weekend. Meanwhile, Jernej Kruder of Slovenia and Miho Nonaka of Japan become the Bouldering season champions at the last Boulder World Cup of 2018. Here's Liam Lonsdale with a report.
This past weekend saw the final Boulder World Cup of the season take place in Munich, Germany. Nine GB Climbing Team athletes were registered to compete alongside the largest starting list of the season with well over 200 athletes.
The men started their qualifications in the morning, and the day would heat up very quickly, both literally and figuratively. Matt Cousins showed a great run of form unlocking three of the five boulders and facing a nail biting wait to see if he would qualify for semi-finals the next day. Unfortunately, luck wasn’t on his side and he was bumped out of a qualifying position by just a couple of attempts. There’s no doubt that if he can continue to perform like that, he will be making a semi-finals soon enough. The rest of team GB Climbing Team men faced long waits in isolation and were forced to wait it out for their turn to climb as the competition structure baked in the sun, which was out in full force. The heat and number of climbers made for creating some challenging conditions for the athletes.
In the women’s competition, it was 15-year-old Emily Phillips who delivered the standout performance, qualifying for semi-finals in ninth place in her group, topping two of her five qualifying boulders. Special mention, we believe that she was the youngest competitor registered for this competition.
The following day was semi-finals and Phillips was to climb third in the line-up. After coming out and impressively flashing the first boulder, the GB Climbing Team and supporters looked on with bated breath to see how Emily would fare on the rest of the problems. It was to be her only top, but Phillips continued to climb with composure and did the team proud in her first ever Senior World Cup semi-finals.
“This year I attended two senior Boulder World Cups to gain experience on the circuit. It was an amazing feeling to compete with climbers that until now I’d only ever seen on a live stream. Waiting to climb, I was nervous, but once I came out and flashed the first boulder, I just felt so happy. The support of the rest of the team, and my family who travelled with me to the even was incredible and I enjoyed every second of it.
“I was delighted and also surprised to be selected for the World Championship team that will compete in Innsbruck. Right now I am making the most of this opportunity and will focus on my bouldering performance.”
We are sure it won’t be her last. The team will now regroup and make their final preparations for the World Championships which takes place in Innsbruck in under two weeks’ time.
The GB Climbing Team is supported by the BMC, Mountaineering Scotland, and Rock Over Climbing. The GB Paraclimbing Team is supported by Oakwood Climbing Centre and Quay Climbing Centre. The GB Ice Climbing Team is supported by Montane. Many UK walls also support the British Climbing Team through free or subsidised entry.
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