Olympics 2020: Julia Chanourdie


© Eddie Fowke

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IFSC World Cup Wins Podiums
Speed 0PB: 8.940s 0
Boulder 0 0
Lead 0 1
View IFSC profile
  • World Games 2017 - Bronze (Lead)









Julia Chanourdie (FRA) Age: 25

Born in France's mountainous Haute-Savoie department, Julia Chanourdie discovered climbing under the tutelage of her father and eventual coach, Eric Chanourdie. Chanourdie's parents owned a climbing gym and given the family's proximity to quality crags, it wasn't long before Chanourdie and her younger sister were following their father up rock faces and entering competitions. As a youth competitor, Chanourdie was a regular podiumist in European Youth Cups and World Youth Championships. Upon progressing to senior level, Chanourdie brought power and dynamic agility to the wall - qualities which set her apart from her French female predecessors, who were often pigeonholed as technique and endurance-focused climbers.

Perhaps surprisingly, Chanourdie has only one IFSC World Cup medal to her name, but she has made numerous World Cup finals in Lead and as of 2019, a couple in Boulder - hence why she has become such a notable athlete on the circuit. In 2019, Chanourdie made it very clear what her intentions were regarding Olympic qualification. She made semi-finals in Boulder for the first time in Meiringen despite limited experience in Boulder, and progressively improved her performance with each passing event throughout the season, culminating in a 4th place in Munich, where her potential for an Olympic spot became very apparent. While her 2019 Lead results noticeably dropped compared to her consistent 2016 and 2017 seasons, Chanourdie's Speed times were diminishing with each World Cup round - the product of time spent with France's highly competent Speed coaches and athletes. It became increasingly obvious that "work your weaknesses" was a principle that Chanourdie had been living and training by, and it paid off. 

Qualification route

Toulouse Combined Qualifier event: 2nd Place

With Anouck Jaubert piling on the pressure from her one-place-superior performance in Hachioji (11th), the French female contest for two spots by three women (Chanourdie, Jaubert, Gibert) made for one of the most exciting storylines of Olympic qualification. On home turf, Chanourdie shone in Toulouse and qualified for the final, thereby securing her spot and eventually finishing 2nd with 3rd, 5th and 2nd places across Speed, Boulder and Lead. 


Chanourdie is one of the world's most accomplished rock climbers, being one of only five women to have redpointed 9a+ alongside fellow Olympian Laura Rogora.

UKC prediction

Given Chanourdie's meteoric rise in 2019 and her proven ability to work on her weaknesses and become an all-rounder, we think she is capable of making the final and finishing around 6th place.

© Eddie Fowke
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