Site of the first Winter Olympics in 1924 and one of the oldest ski resorts in France, Chamonix hosted the first European stop in the 2014 IFSC Lead World Cup series, with a dual Lead and Speed competition this July 10-12, 2014. The city that Mark Twaight dubbed "the death-sport capital of the world" lived up to its promise of adrenaline-pumping sensations minus the danger with the world’s top speed and lead climbers pushing their limits in extreme rainy conditions in Chamonix!
Humid holds upped the challenge in Lead
As if the World Cup routes weren’t difficult enough, extreme weather conditions increased the climbing challenge this weekend, with rain, cold, and humidity, rolling in, the latter being the killer, causing a wet film to form on the holds, despite the walls being covered.
In the lead competition on the women’s side, Korea’s Jain Kim climbed calmly to a victory, just missing the top of the final route with a score of 50+, while Austria’s Magdalena Röck claimed silver with 45+, followed closely by Slovenia’s Mina Markovic with 44+.
Despite the routesetters’ intention of creating an easier route for the men’s lead finals, no competitor made it much higher than halfway, with Japan’s Sachi Amma taking gold with a score of 28+, Austria’s Jakob Schubert in second with 24+, and Slovenia’s Domen Skofic in third with 23+.
Running through the rain in Speed
In Speed, Eastern Europe dominated the podiums. For women, Russia’s Alina Gaidamakina took her first gold of the 2014 season, followed by Poland’s Aleksandra Rudzinska in second and Russia’s Mariia Krasavina in third.
In the men’s field, Ukraine's Danyl Boldyrev won his second gold of the 2014 season after Baku. Poland’s Marcin Dzienski took silver and Iran’s Reza Alipourshenazandifar took bronze.