Last weekend saw the return of the annual Climbing Works International Festival. The CWIF is probably the most anticipated indoor climbing event in the UK and this year was no different. There are 350 places made available for competitors and the competition was fully booked within two day of opening registration.
I have had a very busy few months of work so I was looking forward to getting away and attending the event. It is always a very social affair with much of the climbing community attending. This year there were also a large number of forign competitiors with the likes of the Dutch, Slovenian and French national teams there.
The competition has two parts; on the Saturday all 350 competitors do a 30 bloc qualification tour then on Sunday the top climbers go through to a Semi final and final.
This year the qualification round suited me perfectly, lots of technical, balancy and droppable problems, just my style. I managed to climb 29 out of the 30 problems and scored 275 out of 300 points, a score good enough to see me through to the semi finals on Sunday in 12th position.
Sunday morning arrived. By 11 am there were 40 competitors (20 male and 20 female) locked away in isolation. I really enjoyed the Isolationas I got to observe how some of the best climbers in the world warm up and prepare themselves to climb hard.
The semi finals ran in reverse order of Qualification, I was out 9th. The format was onsight with 5 minutes on each problem. The first problem was hard, a really brutal affair through a roof. I struggled. The second problem was dynamic with big moves and flying legs. The third was similar and the fourth and final problem was a slab.
I ended my round with no tops but 3 bonuses in 3 attempts. I feel Like I could have done 2 of the problems, dropping the last move of both on my flash attempt but unable to finish them off as tiredness kicked in. The problems were hard, but they had to be to split weak outdoor climbing punters like me from the worlds elite!
Overall I finished 18th which I feel is a pretty respectable position. Full results and replays of the semi final and final are available here http://www.climbingworks.com/the-beta/events/cwif-2014/
I really enjoyed the competition.
We finished the weekend off with a relaxed trip to Cratcliffe for some sunny bouldering.
I would like to thank Mammut for supporting my climbing and for renewing my contract for another year. Thanks also go to La Sportiva for the amazing climbing shoes that they make.