231209 IFSC News - Lauren Mukheibir books a spot at Paris 2024 with 0.2-point margin victory
South Africa
IFSC African Qualifier
Boulder & Lead

The women’s Boulder & Lead final at the IFSC African Qualifier Pretoria 2023 went down to the wire, as Lauren Mukheibir of South Africa prevailed over her teammate Rauen Krohn by just 0.2 points, taking gold medal and the ticket to Paris 2024.

A brutal set of hard, challenging boulders welcomed the eight finalists at the beginning of the day, with problem number one awarding no points, and only Mukheibir topping W2. The third and fourth boulder also proved to be untoppable, but with Krohn securing the high zone on both of them, they narrowed the margin between the two athletes to 4.3 points – 29.0 for Mukheibir, 24.7 for Krohn.

Following a 20-minute break, the athletes took turns on the Lead wall, and the duel between the top-two climbers became even more close.

Mukheibir climbed second-to-last, cruising through the final route with confidence, and only falling halfway through the upper part of the wall. The 22-year-old from Johannesburg concluded her final with 109.0 points.

“I feel fantastic! I have trained in Australia the whole year with an incredible coach called Alan, and he’s taught me so much. In between all the training, I’ve been studying over time, I’ve just finished my degree, and now this! I just feel phenomenal!” she said.

“I’m going to Paris. I still can’t believe it! I still can’t believe it! My parents were here, my godfather was here, pretty much the whole team from my gym in Johannesburg, they have all had my back since day one. I’m so happy that they were here to witness this.

“I’m not gonna lie, the boulders felt really hard, but also so cool. I would love to get the chance to try them again! I started getting very nervous just before the Lead, so I’ve locked everything out and climbed my heart out. I had so much fun!” concluded Mukheibir.

Placing second with 108.8 points, 19-year-old Krohn obtained a better result than Mukheibir on the Lead wall – 84.1 against 80.0 – but had to settle for silver.

Completing the poium in third place, and putting the bronze medal around her neck, 16-year-old Caitlin Bouwer finished with 49.8 points.

For the women’s Boulder & Lead complete results click here.

The IFSC African Qualifier Pretoria 2023 will conclude this afternoon, 9 December, with the men’s Boulder & Lead final, starting at 16:00 (UTC+2:00) and presenting a ticket to the Paris Olympics to the winner of the event.

A detailed schedule of the event is available on the dedicated event page. All semi-finals and finals, plus Speed qualifications, will be live streamed on the IFSC YouTube channel

News and updates about the event will be available on the IFSC website, and on the Federation’s digital channels: Facebook, Instagram, X, LinkedIn, and exclusively for the Chinese audience, Douyin and Weibo.

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