Despite downpours outside, fans of Sport Climbing travelled this weekend to the CIDCO Exhibition Centre in Navi Mumbai, India, to witness another spectacular show of elite Bouldering. It was the second to last event of the 2017 season, with thrilling moments lasting until the very last second.
With Janja Garnbret of Slovenia not competing this weekend, Shauna Coxsey needed to place 9th or better to defend her title as IFSC Bouldering World Cup season champion. The British star did so with emphasis, leading the way after every round and securing the victory midway through semi-finals.
The first finals problem for the men was completed with no problem, with nearly every finalist picking up a flash. Jongwon Chon, Aleksei Rubtsov and Rei Sugimoto separated themselves from the field on M2, withstanding the sustained strong movements of the endurance boulder. M3 tested the athletes in a new way, switching from a powerful start to an uncomfortable finish with slippery feet. The three medallists were again the sole athletes to top, but it was Chon who took sole possession of 1st place with a smooth flash. After 2 days of challenging climbing at the highest level, the final problem took every last bit of energy. 2016 Navi Mumbai winner Kokoro Fujii and Jakob Schubert stuck the brutally physical, dynamic move to bonus but just did not have enough energy and time to top. Already the default winner by attempts, Chon finished the weekend in style by topping M4 in the concluding seconds.
The last contest for the women was equally exciting. Medallists Coxsey, Akiyo Noguchi and Miho Nonaka, winner at Navi Mumbai last year, also distinguished themselves early on as the only athletes to top W1. On W2, the bonus hold after cumbersome movements between two body-size volumes eluded most of the competitors. Nonaka was first to latch the hold and keep it together to the top, followed by Coxsey who duly repeated the feat. All three frontrunners and Petra Klingler topped a more static W3, leaving the final problem to decide the podium. W4 required a complete set of strength and technique, with a multi-move swing following the bonus hold. All the finalists left everything on the mats, but in the end only one made it to the top. Needing a quick trip to bonus for the victory, Coxsey wowed the crowd by sticking the swing and topping exactly as time expired alongside Chon for a perfect finish. It was a back—to-back win for both athletes, who also placed 1st at IFSC World Cup Vail.
Coxsey will be wearing Gold at season’s end, but the other podium placements are still undecided. Tune-in for IFSC World Cup Munich on August 18th-19th, the seventh and final Bouldering event, and find out where all the athletes stand in the season Bouldering rankings for the men and women.
PROGRAM (GMT +5:30)
Saturday 24th June
10:00 Men Qualification
15:00 Women Qualification
Sunday 25th June (LIVE)
09:00 Men and Women Semi-Finals
17:15 Men and Women Finals
20:00 Awarding Ceremony