Seb Bouin has made the third ascent of Barnabé Fernandez' Chilam Balam, 9b, at Villanueva del Rosario near Malaga, Spain. The route is around 80m and 400 moves long, with the redpoint crux, some delicate slab moves at the very top.
Seb got very close a few weeks ago, falling within five moves from the top, and now he has come back and done it. This also means he's become the second Frenchman to climb this grade after Fred Rouhling who did Akira in 1995.
Previously he has done several routes in the 9a - 9a+ range, so this doesn't come as a big surprise.
Another Frenchman, Romain Desgranges also got very close in late April, but he won't come back anytime soon as he will compete on the World Cup as usual.
The route was first climbed by Barnabé in 2003. It sparked a lot of controversy at the time as he:
1) Suggested 9b+ at a time when the only 9b was Fred Rouhling's unrepeated Akira. 2) Couldn't produce a belayer who could confirm the ascent
Adam Ondra made a quick repeat in 2011, needing only four tries. He said he was very lucky though and that the top moves easily could have spat him off many more times.
Seb's ascent was the 4th of a 9b or harder this year (Jakob's ascent of Fight or flight was done 31 Dec last year):
Sachi Amma - Fight or flight, 9b
Chris Sharma - El Bon combat, ~9b/+
Ethan Pringle - Jumbo Love, 9b
Seb Bouin - Chilam balam, 9b
Here is a video of Seb making the first ascent of Perejito, 8c+/9a, in the Ramirol sector at Verdon, France.
And here is a video where Adam climbs Chilam balam: