In the recent bouldering competition at The Climbing Works in Sheffield, Percy Bishton, doing his bit to stave off the economic downturn, offered a £50 cash prize to the first climber to complete two of his 'special' problems.
With a very talented field of competitors, the race was on. Percy described the exciting finale on The Climbing Works blog:
“In the end it came down to a matter of speed to decide the prize! Dave Barrans fought to the top of problem one, whilst Ryan Pasquill looked on having already bagged the second problem. As Dave tried to recover from his exertions, Ryan stepped onto to problem 1 and looked like scooping the cash.
However, due to a load of egging on from the crowd, Dave suddenly realised that if he jumped onto the second problem and dispatched it before Ryan had finished the technical problem one, the money would be his!
The scene as both guys fought their way up the problems simultaneously was amazing - both problems worth at least 7b+ or harder and monstrously physical. In the end Ryan just managed to hit the finishing hold of his problem less than 10 seconds before Dave finished his bloc, so Ryan scooped the cash but it was a fantastic bit of climbing to watch - like a bouldering duel!”
The next and final round of the 'Works' bouldering league is on Friday the 13th of February – just enough time to get warmed up.
Prize winner Ryan Pasquill recently climbed the long standing project to the left of The New Statesman at Ilkley, Yorkshire. This beautiful wall of scooped gritstone features extremely hard climbing (around Font 8A) and had repelled all suitors for several decades (UKC News Item).
From hard gritstone routes to indoor bouldering competitions, the gritstone/Sheffield scene is currently white hot with talent and psyche. It will be interesting to see the outcome of the forthcoming CWIF (Climbing Works International Festival) which is happening on the 7th March. This will be an international bouldering competition, with problems set by many top climbers including the French legend Jacky Godoffe.