Climbing - easy to the last grip - sport
Yannick Flohé and Alexander Megos are getting a bit closer to their Olympic dream with their medals at the World Championships in Japan.
The bouldering finale at the World Championships in Hachioji cost Yannick Flohé a lot of skin. Even during the competition, the judges instructed him to mask his bleeding fingertips with white tape. However, that did not stop the 20-year-old athlete from climbing to third place in his first final at an international seniors' competition. Only the Japanese Tomoa Narasaki and the Austrian Jakob Schubert were better.
The success was all the more amazing because it was not at all clear for a long time whether Flohé would belong to the World Cup squad. So he pushed his good performance on the ease with which he had started in Japan at the start: "I decided very spontaneously to ride at all," he said. Because the main focus of the competitions in Hachioji is the qualification for the Olympics 2020; and he had originally better chances at the second quota place competition in Toulouse in November calculated.
Flohé was not one of the favorites in bouldering, the sport climbing discipline without rope safety at jump height. All the more excited was Urs Stoecker, one of the national coach, about the élan and the self-confidence of young sportsman from Essen, who starts for the DAV Aachen. Flohé had started climbing at the age of four, and his parents took him to the hall. Today he is considered an all-round talent. Flea was in all laps "physically and technically climbed strong," said Stöcker. And he had kept a cool head - despite the demanding and, as the national coach found, "too difficult screwed Boulder". Except for the Japanese Tomoa Narasaki reached in the final no athlete to the so-called top, so the last handle of the route.
However, the competitions on the wall are far from over for Flea. Just as little as for his teammate Alexander Megos, 26, from Erlangen, who went to the final on Thursday in the Lead discipline, the classic rope climbing, and won World Championship silver. Megos had to be beaten on the hard route only the Czech exceptional climber Adam Ondra. Because he had not made it into the top 20 athletes in bouldering, he was particularly under pressure in his special discipline.
Both Yannick Flohé and Alexander Megos have now brought their medals to an excellent starting position for the final combined boulder, rope climbing and speedclimbing competition at this World Cup: for that Olympic Combined, which will see its Olympic premiere next year in Tokyo. Seven starting slots for the Summer Games will be distributed in Hachioji. To do so, however, the players only have to prove themselves in all three individual competitions and then make it to the final combination, in which there are also medals. For the athletes, this means constant climbing - they compete almost every day.
Yannick Flohé only got three hours sleep after his bouldering bronze medal. And with the broken fingertips, he did not make it to the semifinals in lead climbing the next day. Nevertheless, his chances for the combined final are good. Crucial now is how he will perform in the speed competition on Saturday, when the climbers have to climb a 15-meter-high, standardized wall at high speed. He could do it well, because he was third in the German Speed Championships and is well in training. Until Saturday, Flohé says confidently, he still has enough time to keep his fingers clean.