Following on from the 'How to climb 7A+' thread, and I realise that it isn't very exciting reporting, but do we know what sort of things Steve warmed up on before ticking these on-sights? A 7A, 7B, 7C type thing to get the fingers working before getting on something hard, or is there something else, bouldering perhaps ... or does he just walk up to the crag and get straight on 8A?
Properly impressive stuff and, despite Steve's self effacing comments, not that far from the cutting edge particulary from somebody who doesn't get to spend months on end onsighting on sunkissed euro limestone.
Warm up depends on time and routes really. Sometimes it's a 7b+ or worse but this is a bad plan from cold. And if it's boldery at the start I'll probably fall off!
In Spain I began on 6a's on a few days. I like to get moving on easy ground and enjoy the movement with zero stress. Sometimes the venue dictates or the oncoming sun makes everything speed up. Before doing stuff in Siurana with a 3 hour window I was managing with just one 7b+ (Mandragora) before 8b onsights, seemed to work!
I don't want to get hung up on semantics but I was just saying that in terms of outright performance (ie grades) Lucy seemed to be a bit behind the Euro sport climbing fraternity ie not world class. I had thought that this is to be expected because she is more of an all rounder. Steve Mac on the other hand is a dedicated sport climber with a UK 9a+ ascent which is pretty much the mens top grade worldwide.
In any case it sounds like Lucy could go further and i certainly hopes she gets the support from sponsors etc to do this.
I would imagine this a fairly uncontroversial reading of the facts so i don't understand Mick's defensive tone.
Mick, above i had mentioned 3 female climbers who were climbing 2-3 grades above Lucy. This isn't to dismiss here achievements but to put them in context.
You seem to be drawing up your own guidelines as to what is world class....I am looking at the numbers people are actually pulling.
You mentioned Dave Mac and again he is a talented all rounder (one of the best?) but not a world class SPORT climber....he is a grade or two off the pace. Again i think this is really just a statement of fact.
I'm not trying to wind you up or have as you seem to think "a pointless debate"....i find the topic interesting.....if you don't want to contribute that is fine.
World class is vague in climbing and its pundits like Mick (as well as peers) who decide who can be described this way and how big the class is based on perception and comparing performance. 8a.nu has a stab at creating a world ranking system.
yeah i agree it depends on your definition. Perhaps an analogy is the Olympics 100m race. If you have 15 in the race is everybody world class or just the first 3. Mick seems to be saying the former, and I the latter.
But i don't know if that makes either of us plain wrong end of story.
Come off it Mick. The top redpoint standard for women was 8b+ 19 years ago. It is not in 2009. It is a good effort but it is not "World class".
Charlotte Durif has onsighted 8b+ as, of course, has Josune Bereziartu.
Even if you were to say "World class" included a grade (or even two) lower than the best achieved then, for women, redpoint "World class" would be 8c+ or at a push 8c.
As usual you come steaming in with "facts" and then when someone disagrees by quoting actual facts you dismiss them as being wrong and then tell them to stop arguing the toss. It's amusing but it's also wrong.
I agree with Morgan, there are many women that have onsighted 8b and redpointed 8c and above. This does not mean that anyone is trying to denigrate Lucy's achievements which are nothing short of heroic considering their breadth and the fact she is UK based.
Interestong that someone running a web froum should be so against debate on climbing......
> (In reply to seagull)
> Oh dear all the trainspotters are out today. Get over to 8a.nu if you want to spray mere figures.
> Climbing is a lot more than that. And so is the definition of World Class.
> I have spoken and it is true. Thousands agree with me and you are wrong, as usual.
Hilarious. That's the second time today I've had to check it's not April 1.
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
> Mick between you, me and the silent majority i am not sure whether to laugh or go and bang my head against the wall.
I'd laugh. If you get it wrong laughter is the best medicine.
I was hoping to bring the climbing statisticians out.....they need their fix.
Now discuss this by David Graham if you misguidedly think that grades are set in stone....
"Perhaps the ancient grades from the 80's where 7b+ routes are comparable with 8a routes of today, started some confusion for people to figure out route numbers (I know when I go to a cliff, and climb an 8b+ that has been put up a few years ago, then try and on sight some 7b+ which was put up 20 years ago and realize its nearly as hard as the 8b+, I am aware of this as an issue and a source of confusion towards having one scale"
Consider that 8c has been soloed - hey somebody like to solo Zoolook........ 8a's are getting onsighted and reported and are only 7c.....
Sport grades are a mess and cannot be used directly to compare performance.
> Consider that 8c has been soloed - hey somebody like to solo Zoolook........
why is this relevant? The '8c' (now considered to be 8b) is hardly high, so comparing it too Zoolook is irrelevant, and plus, even if it is relevant, have standards really moved on from Le Menestral solo'ing Revelations?.....
it an interesting point how grades have evolved....i've seen an 8a+ climber struggle on Pichnebule (old school 7b+) then just pull on the draws.
I don't think we however are talking about mis matches in grades just what constitutes world class performance. Dave's point would only be relevant if it was acknowledged Lucy's 8b+ Siurana tick was way undergraded compared to say Natalija's 8c+ tick in Misa Pec. In the absence of evidence to the contrary one can only assume that each is fair for the grade.
By this logic Lynn Hill's ascent of an "old skool" 8b+ (Mass Critique at Cimai) in 1990 is more impressive than Lucy climbing a "nu skool" Spanish 8b+ anyway! Not that I'm saying it is. There were soft touches 19 years ago just as there are now. It's just they were harder to find.
Also, you used sport grades to define what you see as "World Class" and then slagged them off as being "a mess and cannot be used directly to compare performance".
I believe this is called talking yourself into a corner.
In reply to seagull: The 8b+, Kalea Borroka which Lucy did is actually quite an old route, by Spanish sport climbing standards....and Siurana is notoriously fierce, in a similar style, grade wise, to the uk....
> (In reply to teddy)
> I disagree ted. Of course it's newsworthy to report the first British woman climbing 8b+. It doesn't by definition make it World Class. Two different things.!
Yes you're right. I suppose it depends on how you define world class, whether widely or more narrowly. I guess Natalya Gross doing an 8b+ might not be considered world class as she has climbed much harder. However, perhaps its nice to call world class somebody doing a climb which is only 3 grades below the max level achieved.
Lynn Hill doing that 8b+ in 1990 is obviously perhaps more noteworthy as it was so long ago and the max level at the time. That does not happen very often though. We'd be sat around for years waiting for any world class things to talk about if we get too fussy!
i might also put the cat amongst the pigeons further and suggest that a world class female ascent is of a route the boys are yet to onsight....so anything at the 8c/+ level would fall in to this category.
Mick, I think it's a shame you're basically getting people to sound like they're downplaying Lucy Creamers achievements, which they aren't. What she's done is fantastic, and she's clearly one of the best female climbers the UK has produced.
But when you talk about world class, i think it's a bit more clear cut than you're trying to make out. In football, where names are well known, a handful of names would be produced, and that's a sport with a LOT more participants than climbing... Ronaldo, Messi, Gerrard etc (cue debate on who's a world class footballer). In climbing, world class MALE climbers (talking sport climbing here), I'd say currently there's Sharma, Ondra, Usobiaga, Ramon whatsisname, and maybe Andrada and Steve Mclure? They're redpointing 9b's, onsighting 8c, and lots of them. With the FEMAlES, the likes of Duriff onsighting 8b+, and the SLovenian lady redpointing 8c+, and Josune Berjdsfbjdbjkfbjksd repdointing 9a, clearly stand out head and shoulders as world class.
Again, this isnt in any way to dismiss what British women are doing, but redpointing 8b+ doesnt really compare with this, in the same way that coming in 5th in the olympic semi final in 9.98 seconds, doesnt really compare with smashing the world record in 9.69 seconds. Despite your insistence that world class isn't definable, I think it's clear that these are 2 different levels.
What REALLY astounds me is your ridiculous arrogance in thinking that you are some sort of authority figure on this, and seem to be actively discouraging debate on your website! Perhaps you prefer the usual pish that gets talked about on here?
Anyway, well done to all folk mentioned above. You're very good at climbing rocks.
> There is no argument there.
> ignore the so called in-crowd experts.
Mick, your arrogance is so incredible you even seem to be unaware of it!
How many women have climbed 8b+? I would guess at Hundreds. For arguments sake I'll go for 200, which is quite possibly conservative. Personally, I don't call that world class. I think to do so plays down the achievements of the very few who have really pushed the boundaries
In reply to All except Ste Mac: Can you start your own thread on the subject of climbing standards of world class climbers (or not world class climbers) so I don't have to sift through to see comments about this fantastic (imho) bit of climbing by Steve McClure?
> (In reply to Mick Ryan - UKClimbing.com)
> Mick, your arrogance is so incredible you even seem to be unaware of it!
> How many women have climbed 8b+? I would guess at Hundreds. For arguments sake I'll go for 200, which is quite possibly conservative. Personally, I don't call that world class. I think to do so plays down the achievements of the very few who have really pushed the boundaries
Your guessing. How many climbers are there in the world? How many are women?
World Class doesn't mean just one ore two climbers. There's a pack of world class climbers. Some are higher up in that pack than others obviously.
Analogies to running or football don't hold water. Results there are clear cut and measured, objectively judged.
Climbing performance is subjective as are grades. They are ball-park figures ; o ) Further often performance is self-assessed, leading to all kinds if shenanigans.
Stop rabbiting on about arrogance and unaware - you are guessing again. Stick to the topic.
> (In reply to Morgan Woods)
> OK but my point still stands - news/world class, same difference to me, the terms are virtually interchangeable.
> 9b+ has not been confirmed sure but I think ppl in the know acknowledge that it probably exists.
Thats the point of some of the above though.
It seems on this website that we get an over supply of hype for UK female achievements which whilst good, and worth reporting, don't deserve most of the hyperbole around them...
> (In reply to Jeff25)
> Prompted by your comment I re-read the write up of Lucy Creamer doing the 8b+ in Siurana - the first UK female to tick this grade.
> Perhaps you can point to the hype because I can't find any.
By website I didnt mean the article (which i hadnt read, but is good). I meant more in some of the comments linked to the achievements. Like those above by Mick.
They come across as arrogant (maybe tongue in cheek i think?), but still v dismissive of any other views and discouraging of any debate on the subject.
I'm a bit unclear as to what there is to debate - there is certainly something to celebrate. There are only a limited number of females currently climbing 8b+ in the world (under 30?) so it is a world class performance irrespective of other remarkable standout performances such as Lynn Hill previously climbing that grade in the 1990's or Josune onsighting that grade and redpointing 2 grades harder. In the article Lucy has declared she is setting her sights on an 8c - great stuff.
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