LEAD AND SPEED WORLD CUP TROPHIES AT STAKE IN JAKARTA
The International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC) Lead and Speed World Cup 2022 season will come to a close in Jakarta, Indonesia, this weekend, with the final medals up for grabs across the two disciplines.
Over 180 athletes from all around the world will descend on the Southeast Asian Island to try and secure not only a podium spot, but an IFSC World Cup Series 2022 trophy in either Lead or Speed.
Home support will surely be focused on Speed with medals and records galore coming out of the nation in recent times.
Kiromal Katibin is the current world record holder with five seconds flat, and maybe a home crowd will be enough to push the Indonesian climber under that magic 5-second barrier.
Although Katibin has been fast, Speed medals have been in short supply as those quick times have come from qualification rounds. One thing is for sure though: the full Speed event is a must see right from the start!
Another home nation athlete to look out for in the men’s event is Veddriq Leonardo who is looking for a hat-trick of titles after wins in Seoul, South Korea, and Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, earlier in the year. Veddriq also has gold from The World Games Birmingham 2022 in his list of achievements from this season.
Both Katibin and Leonardo are in with a chance at winning the Speed World Cup 2022 title.
On the women’s side of the competition, Desak Made Rita Kusuma Dewi has two bronze medals to her name in 2022, and like her compatriot Katibin, will be hoping a little home support will give her an edge to gain a few steps up the podium.
It will be tough for the home nation athlete though, as Poland yet again bring a strong women’s Speed team headlined by the Kalucka sisters – Aleksandra and Natalia – who faced off in the gold medal race at the last World Cup event, in Edinburgh, Scotland, Great Britain.
Aleksandra has the safety net of knowing the 2022 Speed title is sewn up with Natalia almost certainly earning herself a place on the Trophy podium. USA’s Emma Hunt splits the pair on the season standings in second helped by her bronze in Edinburgh behind the Kalucka sisters.
Another American having a recent surge in Speed is young gun Samuel Watson who not only reached his first final in Edinburgh, but won it for the country’s first ever Speed gold. That came off the back of a Youth World Championships podium in Dallas, Texas, USA, with Watson keen to be taking advantage of the medal winning run in Jakarta.
Duffy made history in Innsbruck, Austria, securing gold in both Boulder and Lead at the same event, while teammate Grupper won gold in Briançon, France, and Edinburgh last time out. Both of the Americans are high in the Lead season standings which Japan’s Homma Taisei tops, just ahead of Slovenia’s Luka Potocar.
In early September, the Koper World Cup event was headlined by Mori Ai of Japan returning to competition to stop Slovenian Janja Garnbret’s unbeaten streak in Lead for 2022.
Mori again beat Garnbret in Edinburgh, but with the Japanese climber not competing the Olympic champion has to be seen as a favourite for gold.
Mori will be hoping one of her Japanese teammates can pick up the baton for a medal push, a climber such as Tanii Natsuki who was just off the podium in Edinburgh where she finished fourth and who took a silver in Dallas, last August.
Unsurprisingly, it’s Garnbret who has an unassailable lead for the 2022 women’s trophy, with Seo Chaehyun favourite to take second spot. The South Korean is ahead of USA’s Grossman who can secure a podium finish to add to her Boulder World Cup 2022 title.
Speed qualifications will open the event on Saturday, 24 September at 2:00 PM (UTC+7:00); while finals are scheduled at 7:30 PM. Lead qualifications will kick off on Sunday 25 at 9:00 AM, with semi-finals and finals closing the programme on Monday 26.
Information about broadcast and streaming are available here.
Veddriq Leonardo of Indonesia competes at the IFSC World Cup Chamonix 2022
Photo: Lena Drapella/IFSC