British Army

In mid March the Army Sports Climbing Team, led byWO1 (RSM) Mike Smith, competed as guests of the Belgian Army at their Sport Climbing competition held at the Klimax sports centre Puurs in Belgium. Male and Female Teams from the Belgian, British, French, German and Dutch services competed over two days in a variety ofcategories. The team did well with six of the 11 getting through the eliminators to participate in the semi-finals. These were significantly harder and only two progressed into the finals; in the mens L Sgt Laurence Owen (Coldstream Guards Band) and in the females O Cdt Joanne Holden (RMCS Shrivenham). The final proved too tough even for Owen?s formidable finger strength and wiry frame. However, Joanne Holden (photo, left) dominated her event with an outstanding tenacious and technical performance that saw her beat the other five females in the final by a significant margin. Overall the team came a credible second to the strong Belgian squad, beating the French, Dutch and German teams. The Belgian team will participate as guests in the Army Mountaineering Association run Army Climbing Competition slated to take place in May.