UKC

IFSC Boulder World Cup Keqiao 2024 - Report

© IFSC

The 2024 IFSC circuit kicked off in the new location of Keqiao, China this week. Although rain stopped play and disrupted the men's schedule, the event was an exciting start to this Olympic year, with three top-10 finishes for GB Climbing athletes. Olympians and Paris 2024 ticket-holders Janja Garnbret (SLO) and Tomoa Narasaki (JPN) took gold.

Erin McNeice placed 5th in her first ever World Cup final.  © IFSC
Erin McNeice placed 5th in her first ever World Cup final.
© IFSC

With the upcoming Olympic Qualifier Series due to start in May and Paris 2024 just under four months away, participation in the preceding IFSC events was always going to be patchy. Despite low numbers, some big names were on the startlist.

GB Climbing's Erin McNeice qualified second behind Olympic champion Janja Garnbret (SLO) for semi-finals—only her second-ever semis—then made her first final and finished 5th, while three British men made the semi-final/final, with Toby Roberts finishing in 4th, Max Milne in 9th and Dayan Akhtar in 19th. 

Dayan Akhtar (GBR) achieved a PB of 19th.  © IFSC
Dayan Akhtar (GBR) achieved a PB of 19th.
© IFSC

Paris-qualified Toby Roberts (GBR) flashed all five boulders in qualification along with four others. Due to heavy rain, the round was cancelled and a long day of qualifiers and semis—the results of which would be classed as a final—was rescheduled for Wednesday.

A steely performance by Erin McNeice in the final saw her finish with one Top—a flash—and two Zones. The first Boulder involved a paddle dyno sequence, which Camilla Moroni (ITA), Zélia Avezou (FRA) and Janja Garnbret topped. Garnbret displayed phenomenal strength in moving statically between the dynamic-set sequence, making the crowd gasp in disbelief.

Janja Garnbret made a statement in dropping just one climb throughout the competition.  © IFSC
Janja Garnbret made a statement in dropping just one climb throughout the competition.
© IFSC

Boulder 2, a steep and powerful climb on volumes, was flashed by Erin and topped by most of the field. A tricky slab was completed by Garnbret and Zhilou Lou (CHN), before a burly W4 on pinches stopped all but Garnbret in their tracks on a powerful move to a Zone. Moroni finished with a silver medal and Lou with bronze.

Camilla Moroni (ITA) climbing her way to silver on the tricky B4.  © IFSC
Camilla Moroni (ITA) climbing her way to silver on the tricky B4.
© IFSC

Having dropped only one boulder across the three rounds, Garnbret's domination of the competition is a strong indicator of her form ahead of Paris 2024. She told the IFSC:

"I feel really happy. Of course, after winning you always feel happy but I'm also excited to be back in China after five years. The last time I competed here was in 2019 in Wujiang so it's good to be back."
 
"It's the first World Cup of the season and you are always a little bit nervous because although I have been training hard over the winter you don't really know what your competitors have been doing. I knew I was strong and I felt good, but you never know in a competition."
 
"Today I really enjoyed myself and I climbed like I wanted to climb. I was calm, felt very confident, and I just enjoyed the atmosphere and the competition."

On her 5th place, Erin wrote on Instagram: "First World Cup final!! I feel I have more to give."

Women's podium Keqiao 2024.  © IFSC
Women's podium Keqiao 2024.
© IFSC

After a qualifier re-run in the morning, where Toby Roberts qualified top in his group alongside Sorato Anraku (JPN), a hard semi-final posing as a final for the men provided a tense competition on Wednesday evening. A dynamic Boulder 1 saw the most Tops, and was flashed by Toby Roberts and Max Milne. Boulder 2 received no tops, but Japanese prodigy Sorato Anraku reached the Zone and dropped the last move, while his compatriot Tomoa Narasaki (JPN) also reached the Zone. An awkward Boulder on pinches and a powerful finishing press move was topped by Anraku and Jongwon Chon (KOR).

Toby Roberts gets the 2024 season off to a good start.  © IFSC
Toby Roberts gets the 2024 season off to a good start.
© IFSC

The final slab boulder resulted in a variety of methods and heart-breaking last-move drops. Max Milne (GBR) just missed out on a second top on the M4 slab, falling before matching and finishing 9th. With scores of 2 Tops and 4 Zones, Narasaki and Anraku took gold and silver respectively, with Hannes Duysen (BEL) just behind on 2 Tops 3 Zones. Roberts finished 4th, just two attempts away from bronze in what was a promising performance as he works towards Paris 2024. He wrote on Instagram:

"First comp of the season, finished so close to the podium. I really enjoyed all the boulders from the comp and felt good on the mats. Can't wait for the next Boulder World Cups."

Max Milne (GBR) on form in Keqiao.  © IFSC
Max Milne (GBR) on form in Keqiao.
© IFSC

Narasaki told the IFSC: 

"I'm happy to take the win. It's important to get focused on the Olympic Games and it starts now with this win. I just have to continue training now for the Games."

Tomoa Narasaki (JPN) won the first World Cup of the season after qualifying for Paris 2024 last year.  © IFSC
Tomoa Narasaki (JPN) won the first World Cup of the season after qualifying for Paris 2024 last year.
© IFSC
Men's podium Keqiao 2024.  © IFSC
Men's podium Keqiao 2024.
© IFSC

The circuit moves on to Wujiang for the first IFSC Lead World Cup of the season, starting tomorrow (12 April).

Boulder Men

RankNameNationSemi-final
1 Tomoa Narasaki JPN2T4z 2 4
2 Sorato ANRAKU JPN2T4z 4 8
3 Hannes Van Duysen BEL2T3z 4 4
4 Toby Roberts GBR2T3z 4 6
5 Sam Avezou FRA2T3z 5 6
6 Meichi Narasaki JPN2T2z 3 3
7 Jongwon Chon KOR1T4z 2 6
8 Jakob Schubert AUT1T4z 2 8
9 Anze Peharc SLO1T3z 1 6
9 Maximillian Milne GBR1T3z 1 6
9 Jan-Luca Posch AUT1T3z 1 6
12 Colin Duffy USA1T3z 1 8
13 Dohyun Lee KOR1T3z 2 4
14 Nicolai Uznik AUT1T3z 5 10
15 Mickael Mawem FRA1T2z 2 3
16 Ritsu KAYOTANI JPN0T3z 0 7
17 Yuji Fujiwaki JPN0T3z 0 13
18 Satone YOSHIDA JPN0T2z 0 4
19 Dayan Akhtar GBR0T1z 0 5
20 Ram Levin ISR0T0z 0 0
25 Jack Macdougall GBRQual: 2T4z 5 10

Boulder Women

RankNameNationSemi-finalFinal
1 Janja Garnbret SLO3T4z 7 84T4z 5 5
2 Camilla Moroni ITA1T3z 1 32T3z 10 13
3 ZHILU LUO CHN1T4z 4 102T2z 2 2
4 Zélia Avezou FRA2T4z 5 51T3z 5 15
5 Erin Mcneice GBR1T4z 4 71T2z 1 6
6 Anon MATSUFUJI JPN2T3z 8 121T2z 2 4
7 Madison Fischer CAN1T2z 1 2
8 Chloe Caulier BEL1T2z 2 3
9 Staša Gejo SRB1T2z 4 6
10 Oceana Mackenzie AUS0T4z 0 7
11 Mao Nakamura JPN0T4z 0 12
11 Futaba Ito JPN0T4z 0 12
13 Miho Nonaka JPN0T3z 0 8
14 Chaehyun Seo KOR0T2z 0 2
15 Hannah Meul GER0T2z 0 3
16 Anna Maria Apel GER0T2z 0 4
17 Miku ISHII JPN0T2z 0 5
17 Jessica Pilz AUT0T2z 0 5
19 Mia Krampl SLO0T0z 0 0
19 Kyra Condie USA0T0z 0 0
41 Molly Thompson-Smith GBRQual: 1T4z 1 11


This post has been read 1,574 times

Return to Latest News





12 Apr

Minor correction - boulder 3 in the mens final was also topped by Jongwon Chon as well as Sorato

Loading Notifications...
Facebook Twitter Copy Email