Saturday 8 September 2012

Junior Leading World Championships 2012, Singapore

On Saturday 25th August, I departed from Heathrow airport with the British Team for the Junior World Championships ( In the youth B girls category, there was me and Molly, in the youth B boys category there was William, the youth A boys had Buster and Jonny and in the Junior Girls there was Charlotte. We began our journey with a 13 hour flight to Singapore, where we didn't arrive until Sunday.

When we finally got to the airport, we got a taxi to Sentosa (the island where we were staying) and settled into our well air-conditioned rooms.

For the next two days we had the chance to recover from jet-lag and adapt to the hot, sticky climate. On Tuesday we went to China Town, which is the Chinese part of Singapore. I found  this interesting as it was typically Asian, whereas the shopping centre in Singapore was just like being back in England!

The competition was on a purpose built climbing wall on.....the beach! This was quite an awesome place to climb, however it wasn't that convenient because it was impossible to keep sand off the mats and my climbing shoes.

From IFSC facebook photo album day 1
Qualifier 1 took place on Wednesday, where I was climbing 2nd. Personally I preferred this because you always know the time the climbing starts, so you can time your warm-up more precisely, as you know you'll be climbing just after it starts. Knowing that my warm up had gone well, I was feeling far more relaxed than usual. I definitely climbed my best, and once everyone had finished climbing I found out that I was in Joint 3rd out of 48 climbers. This made me a lot more confident and put me in a good position for my 2nd route.

The following day, qualifier 2 began at 11am, however I was 24th to climb, so had quite a wait. I didn't climb very well on my second route but I still qualified for the semi-finals (top26) in 14th place. Molly, William and Charlotte also Qualified for the semis.

Isolation for the semi-finals was due to open at 9.30am on Friday morning, however we got woken up at 7am by torrential rain. I lost all hope that it would go ahead, especially when the rain got heavier as we were eating breakfast. If the semi's has been cancelled, the results from the qualifiers would have been used, meaning I would have come 14th. though I would have been pleased with this result, I had no desire for the semi-finals to be cancelled, because I didn't go all the way to Singapore just to do 2 routes, especially after all the training that had gone into it. Because of this, it seemed like a miracle when the rain finally stopped, and they gave a new time for isolation.

Isolation was on the beach behind the comp wall, where there was a small warm-up wall. I think that though it was hot, the setting of the competition helped me to stay calmer (it made me realise how lucky I was to even be there). There was a long queue for the warm-up wall, so I didn't get quite as much warming up as I'd have liked, however I still think I did my best on the climb, as it was slightly easier  than the qualifiers, meaning you had to get nearer the top to do well, and at the moment my endurance isn't one of my strong points. In the end I finished 20th in the semi's, therefore that was my final result. I was pleased with my performance throughout the competition, and it was a great experience competing somewhere so different from England.

In the end, Team GB had some great results, with William and Molly qualifying for the finals, where William finished an amazing 4th place at his first ever World Championships! and Molly finished 7th. Also, myself and Charlotte made the semi's with Buster and Jonny narrowly missing out.

All in all it was a fantastic trip and was a great opportunity to meet people from all around the World with different cultures. Also, it was a good experience to climb on great routes, set by international route setters, and I really enjoyed the trip :D