La Sportiva Legends Only 2012

This Saturday the last big international bouldering comp of the year will take place in Stockholm: La Sportiva Legends Only.

La Sportiva Legends Only 2012 poster

5 of the best competition boulderers on earth will gather in the Klättercentret climbing gym to try to solve some ridiculously hard boulder problems set by British top climber Shauna Coxsey (who will be head route setter).

The line-up

  • Dmitrii Sharafutdinov from Russia – 3 times World Champion
  • Sean McColl from Canada – 2 times Overall (lead + boulder + speed) Wold Champion
  • Adam Ondra from Czech Republic – Best rock climber ever? Probably. Anyhow he has won the overall World Cup both in lead and bouldering.
  • Jakob Schubert from Austria – Lead World Champion who also has won several medals in Bouldering World Cups.
  • Guillaume Glairon Mondet from France – Usual Bouldering World Cup finalist with 2 gold medals under his belt.

It’s a bit funny to see Glairon Mondet (who’s sponsored by Mad Rock) instead of some other La Sportiva-wearing stars such as Kilian Fischhuber, Daniel Woods or Paul Robinson.

The competition format

The competition format is rather different from the IFSC standard for finals. The participans will have 2 hours on Friday to study and rehearse the problems and then, on Saturday, they will have a few minutes each to complete them. Since it is not a flash or on sight competition they will be able to watch the others climb while waiting for their turn.

The route setting

The fact that these climbing superstars get the chance to study and practice the sequences means that a regular World Cup problem would get send first-try by most of the participants. Coxsey and her team will have to set up really hard problems (8A to 8B they say).  They can also set more extreme and expectacular moves. Triple dyno to a sloper? Sure, they have 2 hours to practice, bring it on!

It will be interesting to see how Coxsey manages the challenge of setting for such talented climbers. A lot has been said about the need for top female route setters in order to ensure the quality and fairness of routes and boulder problems in women competitions. This time it’s the other way around.

I know Coxney for her amazing performances on Bouldering World Cups; she is incredibly talented as a climber but I barely know anything about her route setting skills. I know she’s a route setter at Craggy Island so she’s not new to the job by any means and I’m sure she and her team will blow us away with 5 amazing bolder problems. The route setter is one of the most important variables on which the success of a climbing competition depends and I wish Coxsey the best. May her be inspired and create awesome moves and eye-candy problems.

Another artist involved is Spanish shaper Ferrán Guerrero. Some of his designs have been selected for the comp and since I’m a big fan of his organic shapes I can’t wait to see how the setters put them to use. I’ve read somewhere that this scary hold will be used as top for one of the problems…

More info:

Here’s a wrap-up video from last year’s edition.

Last year’s entire stream is also available on youtube.

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