Just 3 weeks after the Boulder World Championships in Munich, this weekend saw the corresponding Lead competition take place in Gijon, Spain. As with the bouldering event, this is a stand alone event which takes place every 2 years, independent of the World Cup Circuit. In the women's event. South Korea's Jain Kim produced an amazing performance to take her first World Championship win, which she can add to her 21 World Cup victories.
Jain was the last competitor out and she topped the route, providing a fitting finale to a great competition which saw Slovenia's Mina Markovic and Austria's Magdalena Rock in second and third respectively. In the men's event, the overwhelming favourite was Adam Ondra, who has been in amazing form recently having won the Boulder World Championship. Needless to say, he didn't disappoint and took the win to claim the Lead and Boulder World Championships in the same year – an unprecedented double and an achievement that many saw as impossible given the huge difference in skills and physique which the 2 events require.
Ramón Julian Puigblanque also deserves a mention here as well because he was the last climber out and slipped off just when he looked like he could claim the win. Sachi Amma of Japan was third. As if this incredible pair of wins wasn't enough to confirm Adam as the World's best climber, he has also climbed the only 2 confirmed 8C+ Boulder problems in the World, including making the first ascent of 1, he's made the first ascent of all 3 9b+ sport climbs that currently exist, and he's onsighted 3 9a's for good measure.
Make no mistake, we are witnessing the sport being taken to a new level in front of our eyes. Perhaps the most amazing statistic of all is that Adam is still just 21.