Monday, 9 September 2013

Summer 2013

It has been a very busy time over the summer and so I must apologise for not keeping this blog up to date.

At the start of the summer I travelled to Ceuse with Robbie Phillips for a four week climbing holiday.
It was a long journey there and back crammed into the back of Robbie's Jimmy.
I had a great trip and got some good ticks, including Slow Food, my first outdoor 8b+, which I really enjoyed as it was crimps in a roof, and my second 8B, L'ami de tout le monde, which I think is the most fun route I have ever done.

My tick list included - 3x 8a (2nd go) - Carte Blanche, Bourinator, la couleur du vent;
8a+ Rat Man, which unfortunately was a one move wonder but apart from that was good climbing;
and lots of easier onsight practice.

At the Campsite - Photo: Robbie Phillips
My brother, Alexander, joined us for 2 weeks and I also met up with fellow GB team member Alex Waterhouse and another friend Billy Ridal. It was really good fun to be outdoor climbing with friends, but I think 4 weeks away from indoor training is too long for competition climbers (at least for me!)

On my return from Ceuse, I had a day to sort out my kit before I flew out to Imst, Austria with the GB Climbing Team for the European Youth Championships. This was not the best competition preparation and I have learnt from this for the future. I had a good first qualifier finishing this route in 3rd place, but made a mistake while clipping on the second route and slipped off quite low down. However, luckily, I had done enough to qualify for the final in 10th place. In the final I managed to improve on my qualifying position and finished in 7th place.
In Imst 
The following weekend I travelled down to Leeds to compete at the BMC Open Youth Lead and Boulder Competitions. I climbed really well on the Saturday to win the boulder comp and the series, so I am now the British Boulder Champion for Youth B boys. On the Sunday the Lead comp took place. I climbed well in the qualifiers topping both routes, but I misread the last move of the final route and finished in 2nd place to Pete Dawson, fellow team member. Well done Pete!

Next came the World Youth Climbing Championship in Canada, during August. I was really happy with my performance in the qualifiers and topped my 2nd route. I qualified for the semi-final in 4th place and was psyched to do well.
2nd Qualifier - Photo: Nick pope
Then it all went pear-shaped, as my heel slipped in the semi and I ended up finishing in 12th place overall and not making the final. I was really upset and disappointed, but I picked myself up and then refocused for the final EYC of the year in Stavanger, Norway.

It was a great result for the team in Canada as all 6 GB climbers made the semi-finals!

The GB Team - Photo: Nick Pope
This summer has been a great learning curve and I have learned from both my successes and failures.

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