TCA staffer and Black Diamond Hero Roz shares her experience at Arco for her final stage of the World Cup this season.
The comp was on a blisteringly hot Friday, it was like 30 degrees, not so primo connies! The wall looked steep and impressive and the routes looked super fun to climb. I was out 18th; the first route was a crimpy yellow thing with a few big throw moves – it looked good. I pulled on and flowed through the bottom bit, did the big moves, shook out, did a few more, but soon powered out and was off. I was pretty happy with this route as I feel I climbed it well, I was looking forward to giving it my all on the second route.
I find comp days quite hard, there are over 70 competitors, and although the group is split in half between the two routes, there is still a long wait between climbing on your first and second route. I don’t know quite what to do in between routes yet (hopefully more experience will help with this,) but I route read the second climb, watch a lot of climbers on it, ate some food and tried to chill out so I wasn’t too exhausted when I next came to pull on. Route 2 was steeper, pinchy and had a wild jump in the middle – it looked well good! I pulled on and sort of immediately felt pumped. The start was a lot harder than I anticipated, and despite my best efforts I couldn’t crimp the punches, which meant to just started over-gripping everything 😞😝. I was off way earlier than expected and pretty disappointed with the climb. The Team were super nice and supportive to me after and I had a lot of fun cheering on Jen, Jim and Will (the latter two were so close to making semis), which made the day a lot more bearable.
And that was that… My last tie into a World Cup route this season. At first I was a little disappointed in my performances this year, I don’t exactly know what I expected of the season, but I feel I could have climbed better on all the routes. However, I have had the best three weeks travelling, touristing and cragging with Jen and the rest of the team. It is hard to be too disappointed with what I have done with my time. Also, it sounds very cliché but I have learnt so much from doing these comps that I hope it will improve my competition game in the future, and who knows maybe one day I might even be good at them… That is if I decide to keep doing comps. I wouldn’t say I have necessarily enjoyed the comp days, I find them stressful, especially when I don’t climb well, and perhaps I put too much pressure on myself, but maybe I can learn to enjoy comps as much as I enjoy not doing my project at a crag. I still have a lot to learn- how to warm up, what to eat, route reading and head game, but if this summer is anything to go by then I’ll have a lot of fun figuring it out.
A good few days eating pasta, pizza and ice cream with the family, seeing the sights around Arco and swimming in Lake Garda… Who can complain about that?! Special shout out to my sister, Bethan, for coming to support me on her birthday and spending the whole day watching me fall- don’t worry, we celebrated with a few Aperol Spritz and copious amount of Ice cream 🍦.
For now I’m happy to take some time back from comps and go outdoors. I am heading off to Ceuse for some bolt clipping and air time. it’s a crag in the South of France that I’ve always wanted to visit, I just hope the hour walk in doesn’t kill me too much. Straight after this I am heading of to Munich for my first Boulder World Cup (hoping to not injure myself two days before again). Though I don’t think 30m sport routes is necessarily the best training for a boulder world cup, (I had booked Ceuse before deciding to do Munich), I can’t see it being detrimental to my fitness or psyche – let’s just hope they set some really pumpy, taversing boulders eh?[ssbp]