TEARS OF SORROW TO TEARS OF JOY FOR SWITZERLAND’S KLINGLER
In the second session of the day at the IFSC Climbing World Championships in Bern, Switzerland, it was time for the women to take on the Boulder wall.
With 109 climbers fighting for the top 20 positions and a spot in Saturday’s semi-final, it was once again the Slovenian Olympic champion who showed her class. Janja Garnbret has already shown she is in the medal mood with a strong Lead performance, and now she exerted her Boulder dominance.
Garnbret was the only climber to top all five boulders – flashing three - and going through to semi-finals in first from group A.
USA’s Brooke Raboutou progressed in first position from group B topping three boulders and was one of four Americans to go through.
Initially thinking she had blown her shot at a World Championship medal in her homeland, Switzerland’s Petra Klingler eventually progressed in seventh position.
Klingler said: “I came off thinking I didn’t make it because I was falling on the fourth problem so many times on the top move, and I know I can do this move, it’s not that hard, I just thought that’s it, my World Championships is over. But now it’s happy tears and I’m so happy, it’s a bit crazy. It’s a little dream coming true again.
“My coach after the last boulder was like yeah that’s good, and I thought no, it’s not that good, maybe it’s ok-ish, but then he came over like ‘look, look at the score’ and I was like fourth in my group. Just no words.”
France’s Zélia Avezou was another happy climber from qualification. After going through in third overall, Avezou said: “It went very well. I couldn’t expect more. During the World Cup circuit I had a hard time trying to qualify for semis, so it’s great to climb like this in this event. When you are young it’s hard to have confidence when you go to the World Cups, you are impressed by all the strong girls, and then you do more and you start get closer to them and think I’m better than I thought, and that means here I’m more confident.
“I don’t think I have any pressure now. My goal was to go to semis and now I can just enjoy it. It’s already amazing how I have climbed the past two days in Boulder and Lead.”
Feeling the support from the crowd helped Iran’s Elnaz Rekabi made it through qualification. Holding the 13th spot, Elnaz said: “I’m really excited now. It was good for me that I topped the second boulder as it was the hardest one I think, but like always I made mistakes when I get too excited, then I become a bit nervous as I always miss the semi-finals because of stupid mistakes.
“It was a great experience for me though. I enjoyed the routes, the event, the crowds who were cheering me on and encouraging me and it’s important that I just enjoyed my climbing today.”
Great Britain’s Molly Thompson-Smith recovered from a slow start to take the last semi-final spot by finishing in 20th position.
For full women’s Boulder qualification results click here
Petra Klingler (SUI) in women's Boulder qualification action
Photo: Lena Drapella/IFSC