Build Your Boulder
After the excitement of this morning’s semi finals, the competition continued here this afternoon in Stuttgart with the “Build Your Boulder” competition. This event allows the first 3 men and women from yesterday’s GORE-TEX® Be a Rockstar event to build their own boulders and then compete against each other on them.
Best of all, the competitors team up with their own professional climber and they create the boulders together. They have one hour to build the boulders, and, after a short break, the 3 men compete against each and so do the 3 women by trying to climb their own boulder and the ones set by their competitors. They also attempt a fourth boulder, set by our route setting team. The key catch is that if any climber cannot climb their own boulder, they are heavily penalised, so there is no incentive to create an impossible boulder!
In the men’s competition, Matthias Erber (AUT) took on Jakob Schäfer (GER) and Nikola Petrov (BUL), and the women’s event pitted Margarita Zakharova (UKR) against Jara Späte (SUI) and Elnaz Rekabi (IRI).
Nikola Petrov (BUL) topped the standings in the GORE-TEX® Be a Rockstar event yesterday (with 8 flashes on 8 boulders!) and looked like the favourite to win today but could only manage 1 top and ended up in 3rd place. (Having competed in the semi-finals this morning, it would be understandable if Nikola was suffering a bit with fatigue!). Matthias finished second, topping 3 boulders (including a flash on the route setter boulder) but Jakob completed a clean sweep of all 4 boulders to claim the win.
Afterwards, Jakob told us that he wasn’t even planning on entering the competition originally, “It has been a great experience to be here with the pros, normally I don’t even compete much, just for fun with no pressure at all. It was actually just a coincidence that I signed up for Gore-Tex® Be a Rockstar. My girlfriend lives here, I’m from another town, and she told me that there’s a big competition here and asked me why I didn’t sign up. So I thought "Why not? It’s just for fun, I don’t have the chance to win anything here because there are so many strong guys!" But now it seems I might have to do some more competitions!”
In the women’s event, Jara flashed one boulder and got the bonus on 2 others to take third, just behind Margarita who got 2 tops. However, neither of them could live with Elnaz, who completed a superb weekend but winning "Build Your Boulder" a few hours after placing 18th in the adidas ROCKSTARS semi-final, and one day after topping the GORE-TEX® Be a Rockstar standings. This afternoon she flashed all 3 of the athlete-set boulders but couldn’t quite crack the route setters' effort. She did manage a bonus though and looked dominant throughout the event.
She clearly loved the experience though, commenting, “I’m so happy to get the win, I never did route setting before so I was really nervous. I’m happy I could enjoy the routes of my friends from Switzerland and Ukraine - I think it was a very good field…This was my first time climbing in front of such a big crowd and it felt very exciting - all the cheering really gave me energy to take the win!”
The action continues all evening here in Stuttgart, with a movie, DJ battle, a live concert and then of course the adidas ROCKSTARS final. The line ups in both the men’s and women’s finals are staggeringly strong and the show should be spectacular - tune in to the livestream at 8.15pm for all the action.
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