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A Recap of the 2022 IFSC Climbing World Cup Season

Dominant performances earn top rank for Janja Garnbret in lead and Natalia Grossman in bouldering. In men's, Luka Potočar wins lead and Yoshiyuki Ogata wins bouldering

With the wrap-up of the final event in Marioka-Iwate, Japan, the IFSC Climbing World Cup 2022 season has come to a close. After the COVID-19 pandemic cancelled the 2020 series and foreshortened 2021’s, climbing fans around the world were excited for the prospect of a full competition schedule in 2022.

The World Cup thankfully turned out to be a resounding success, starting in April and ending two weekends ago, including 13 locations across 21 events throughout the season (seven lead, six bouldering, seven speed, and one bouldering and lead combined). The series was global, making stops in Switzerland, Italy, Austria, France, Russia, the U.K., the U.S., South Korea, Indonesia, and Japan. After the pandemic comp climbing lull, fans were treated to a thrilling season full of razor close finishes, dominant performances, and world record breaking achievements.

At the end of the series, Japan ranked first in both lead and bouldering and Indonesia took the top spot in speed. In terms of medal count, the U.S. won the most medals with 10 gold, eight silver, and 10 bronze. Japan was a close second with nine gold, nine silver, and eight bronze.

The Slovenians reigned supreme in lead climbing with Janja Garnbret continuing her unprecedented string of dominance and Luka Potočar narrowly edging out Japan’s Taisei Homma for the top spot. Garnbret focused on lead this season rather than bouldering, achieving gold in five of the seven lead events. This placed her well above the other competitors in points, with South Korea’s Seo Chae-hyun achieving second place, 1,400 points behind first.

In bouldering, Japan swept the top three spots in the men’s category, with Yoshiyuki Ogata ranking first. Ogata podiumed in nearly every bouldering event, achieving one gold, two silvers, and three bronzes. In women’s bouldering, the American Natalia Grossman absolutely dominated the field this season, winning five golds and one silver in the six bouldering events. Her dominance was reminiscent of Garnbret’s in years past, marking a bright future for the rising star. Miho Nonaka took second and the US’s Brooke Raboutou took third.

In men’s speed, Indonesian climber Veddriq Leonardo earned top rank, with two golds and one bronze across the five speed events. In second place came Indonesia’s Kiromal Katibin who had a string of world record breaking climbs throughout the series. In the Chamonix event on July 8, he achieved an astonishing time of 5.009 seconds. Polish Aleksandra Kałucka won the women’s category after a very consistent season of podium finishes.

In the bouldering and lead combined event, Japan was once again dominant, with Tomoa Narasaki winning the men’s category and Ai Mori winning women’s.

Next year’s World Cup series will begin in April 2023 in Hachioji, Japan. The 2023 IFSC season will also include the World Championships in the summer, which will serve as the first qualification event for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

The final top 10 ranking athletes in lead, bouldering, and speed at the end of the 2022 IFSC Climbing World Cup are listed below:

Lead – Men

  1. Luka Potočar (Slovenia)
  2. Taisei Homma (Japan)
  3. Jesse Grupper (US)
  4. Ao Yurikusa (Japan)
  5. Yannick Flohé (Germany)
  6. Colin Duffy (US)
  7. Satone Yoshida (Japan)
  8. Sascha Lehmann (Switzerland)
  9. Yoshiyuki Ogata (Japan)
  10. Masahiro Higuchi (Japan)

 

Lead – Women

  1. Janja Garnbret (Slovenia)
  2. Seo Chae-hyun (South Korea)
  3. Natalia Grossman (US)
  4. Laura Rogora (Italy)
  5. Brooke Raboutou (US)
  6. Natsuki Tanii (Japan)
  7. Mia Krampl (Slovenia)
  8. Ryu Nakagawa (Japan)
  9. Vita Lukan (Slovenia)
  10. Jessica Pilz (Austria)

 

Bouldering – Men

  1. Yoshiyuki Ogata (Japan)
  2. Tomoa Narasaki (Japan)
  3. Kokoro Fujii (Japan)
  4. Yannik Flohé (Germany)
  5. Mejdi Schalck (France)
  6. Maximillian Milne (UK)
  7. Lee Dohyun (South Korea)
  8. Colin Duffy (US)
  9. Chon Jong-won (South Korea)
  10. Rei Kawamata (Japan)

 

Bouldering – Women

  1. Natalia Grossman (US)
  2. Miho Nonaka (Japan)
  3. Brooke Raboutou (US)
  4. Futaba Ito (Japan)
  5. Hannah Meul (Germany)
  6. Oriane Bertone (France)
  7. Jessica Pilz (Austria)
  8. Staša Gejo (Serbia)
  9. Camilla Moroni (Italy)
  10. Seo Chae-hyun (South Korea)

 

Speed – Men

  1. Veddrig Leonardo (Indonesia)
  2. Kiromal Katibin (Indonesia)
  3. Long Jinbao (China)
  4. Erik Noya Cardona (Spain)
  5. Samuel Watson (US)
  6. Ludovico Fossali (Italy)
  7. John Brosler (US)
  8. Long Jianguo (China)
  9. Aspar Aspar (Indonesia)
  10. Guillaume Moro (France)

 

Speed – Women

  1. Aleksandra Kałucka (Poland)
  2. Emma Hunt (US)
  3. Natalia Kałucka (Poland)
  4. Deng Lijuan (China)
  5. Aleksandra Mirosław (Poland)
  6. Niu Di (China)
  7. Capucine Viglione (France)
  8. Patrycja Chudziak (Poland)
  9. Aurelia Sarisson (France)
  10. Desak Made Rita Kusuma Dewi (Indonesia)