The first ever World University Championships concluded in Shanghai on Sunday. The five-day event gathered over one hundred talented Athletes from seventeen nations for a historic show of Sport Climbing. In the end, nine nations were represented on the podium, including the host nation.
After a memorable opening ceremony, the Speed Athletes went to work on Wednesday. Six Chinese Athletes qualified for the quarter-final, but it was Poland and Russia that dominated the podium. Russian Stanislav Kokorin posted the best time of the day in the final match, and his 6.11 was enough to beat world champion Marcin Dzienski of Poland. Sunjoon Chae of Korea rounded out the podium. For the Women, Iuliia Kaplina missed out on Bronze with a fall in the small final against Russian teammate Svetlana Motovilova. Teammates faced-off once again in the last race of Finals, with Anna Brozek of Poland besting Klaudia Buczek for Gold.
In Lead, Qualifications on Thursday saw multiple Tops for both Men and Women, but only Julia Chanourdie of France continued the perfection through Finals. Minseon Kim of Korea rebounded in Finals for Silver, falling just short of Chanourdie’s mark. Moe Yoshimura and Yuki Hiroshige of Japan placed third and fourth, respectively. For the Men, six finalists climbed within two holds of one another in Semi-Finals and Finals. Dmitrii Fakiryanov of Russia impressed the crowd in Shanghai by scaling eight holds higher in Finals for the decisive Gold. Runner-up Javier Cano Blazquez of Spain and Bronze medallist Loïc Timmermans of Belgium broke the ties with quicker times in Finals.
The festivities finished on Sunday with Bouldering Finals. Fanny Gibert of France excelled all week long, flashing every problem in Qualifications and Semi-Finals and two problems of a difficult Finals set for Gold. Not far behind her was Chanourdie, who followed-up her victory on Saturday with another podium. Di Niu of China received much support from her home crowd and kept a Bronze medal in China, snagging a Top on the fourth and final problem. For the Men, two Americans donned hardware in Shanghai. Former IFSC Vail World Cup winner Nathaniel Coleman flashed two problems in Finals for Silver, while Solomon Barth edged Fakiryanova by one attempt for the final spot on the podium. Surpassing them all was Kaito Watanabe of Japan, the only Athlete to complete three Finals problems.