Two weeks ago, hundreds of young international hopefuls arrived at the IFSC Youth World Championships 2017 in Innsbruck. After 12 days of hard competition, and with multiple semi-finalists and finalists, GB Climbing Team member Will Bosi qualified for the Olympic format Combined finals in an exciting conclusion to this phenomenal event. Read on for the report:
The 2017 IFSC Youth World Championships was a mammoth event with hundreds of young elite international athletes gunning for glory. Once again, the aspiring youths of the GB Climbing Team have done us proud – everyone put in sterling efforts and multiple athletes got through to semi-finals and finals in Bouldering, Lead and the Olympic-style Combined competition.
In the Bouldering competition, we saw eight GB athletes make it through to semi-finals and a few get close to making finals.
Rachel Carr, GB Climbing Team coach, said: “This year showed great promise for the future of our GB youths, with eight kids making the semi-final and three kids coming incredibly close to finals. Athletes such as Aidan Roberts, Will Bosi, Jim Pope, Hannah Slaney, Emily Phillips and Hamish McArthur went into semis in very strong positions, including a perfect score of 4t4b for Emily.
“All their performances in semis were successful and impressive, where Aidan and Hannah flashed three of the blocs and just missed out on finals. Hopes are high for Emily and Hamish who are currently Youth B with a lot of potential for succes in the future as well as the rest of the team.”
Next up was the Lead competition, where Hamish McArthur, Will Bosi and Hannah Slaney put in incredible performances to make it through to the finals. Hannah even qualified just behind Margo Hayes of USA (the first woman to climb 9a+). After an exciting finale, Hamish finished in 7th, Hannah in 6th and Will placed 8th – amazing climbing from them all!
But it wasn’t over yet, as Will’s efforts in Bouldering and Speed – 16th and 23rd, respectively – together with his Lead result, qualified him for the Olympic format Combined finals, where Will had to compete in all three disciplines, back-to-back, against the world’s elite youngsters, all over again.
Combined Finals of IFSC Youth World Championships 2017
It’s a whirlwind event, starting with the blistering Speed final, followed by the powerful and dynamic Bouldering final, and, when the athletes are almost ready to go home, the endurance-heavy Lead final completely drains them of anything left.
Will was up against three Team Japan athletes, Meichi Narasaki, Yoshiyuki Ogata and Kai Harada, notorious for their Bouldering prowess, along with Kai Lightner of USA and Yannick Flohé of Germany. Fighting hard in all disciplines, Will secured 5th in the Speed final and, due to countback, he placed 6th in the Boulder final; but Lead, his best discipline, was still to come.
Out early, Will gave it everything and battled his way to an impressive height, which stood as the high point for the majority of the round – only Yoshiyuki managed to climb higher. With the Lead final over, the points were tallied and Will’s combined efforts earned him enough to be ranked fourth overall.
Will said: “Fourth in the world! What a way to finish my Youth Worlds; the combined event was so fun and I came off this route with an enormous smile on my face. In the last six years I've travelled the world and competed in numerous competitions, but this one has definitely topped them all!”
Congrats to everyone that took part, we’re incredibly proud of you all.
The GB Climbing Team is supported by the BMC, Berghaus, and Rock Over Climbing, and the GB Paraclimbing Team is supported by Birchall Blackburn Law. Many UK walls also support the British Climbing Team through free or subsidised entry.
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