The Oceania Continental Championships took place in Noumea, New Caledonia, on October 12-15. Australia stood on all but one podium and collected 10 medals in total, New Caledonia excelled in Speed and won 5 medals, and New Zeeland brought home 3 medals.
Lucinda Ann Stirling has been the reigning Oceania Lead champion for five years, winning both the 2013 and 2016 championships. The IFSC World Cup regular from Australia defended the title last weekend, the only athlete to top every route. Her teammate Tiffany Melius completed two tops in less attempts than Stirling in Bouldering finals to become the new Oceania Bouldering champion. In Speed, New Caledonia’s own Loan Maillard posted the fastest time in every round to win the title in front of her home crowd.
For the men, George Sanders of New Zeeland followed up two strong climbs in qualification by matching the high point of Riley Thurstans in finals, giving New Zeeland the Lead title. Sam Lavender bested them both in Bouldering finals, completing two tops to add to Australia’s gold medal tally. New Caledonia dominated in the men’s Speed climbing as well. They won every medal, and Yann Leclerc de Lannoy was never beaten to the top.
The Oceania Youth Championships also took place last weekend, the third qualifying event for the Youth Olympic Games Buenos Aires 2018. Sarah Tetzlaff of New Zeeland led the way for the female athletes in the Youth A Combined finals, placing first in Speed, fifth in Bouldering and second in Lead. Ned Middlehurst of Australia also overcame a lower result in Bouldering, ending the Combined finals with a first place among male athletes in Lead.