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The IFSC Announces the Return of Sport Climbing

The Briançon Lead World Cup in August will be the first event to operate under covid restrictions

Competition will return to the International Federation of Sport Climbing (IFSC). On June 26, the IFSC released a statement in regard to the 2020 Briançon World Cup.

The press release said, “On August 21 and 22 sport climbing will return. In accordance with the current conditions and the decision of the French authorities, the Fédération Française de la Montagne et de l’Escalade (FFME) and the city of Briançon are ready to host an international event.”

Originally, the Briançon Lead World Cup was set to take place on July 18 and 19 of 2020. As a result of COVID-19, this competition was postponed. This event will mark the return of sport climbing to the international stage.

The IFSC Sport Department is also working on a series of IFSC adapted world cups:

  • Briançon (FRA) from August 21 to 22: Lead
  • Salt Lake City (USA) from September 11 to 13: Boulder and Speed
  • Seoul (KOR) from October 7 to 11: Boulder, Lead and Speed DATES TO BE CONFIRMED
  • Chongqing (CHN) from October 23 to 25: Boulder and Speed
  • Wujiang (CHN) from October 30 to November 1: Boulder and Speed
  • Xiamen (CHN) from December 4 to 6: Lead and Speed

The event will be the first to operate under the recently updated IFSC Rules. These rules include the recently redacted Addendum to be used during the COVID-19 pandemic and will likely set the tone for further competition. The Addendum was written by the Climbing During COVID-19 Working Group and enlists specific guidelines concerning hygiene, social distancing and the use of personal protective equipment during Sport Climbing competitions. You can read the Addendum here.


No points will be attributed to athletes’ World Cup 2020 Ranking nor their World Ranking as travel restriction might not allow for the participation of some athletes.

IFSC President Marco Scolaris said, “I have seen an extraordinary willpower to move on in several organisers. We are aware of the difficulties, the challenges and the uncertainty. However, the world needs a message of hope. The health and safety of our athletes, officials, staff and volunteers will always be our top priority, but looking at the passion living in Briançon, today we are confident that, together with FFME and in full compliance with the French laws and regulations, we will be able to deliver a good competition. We trust the same could happen soon in other countries.”

FFME President Pierre You added, “I’m happy to see that the combined effort of Serre-Chevalier Briançon, the IFSC and the FFME paid off and that Serre-Chevalier Briançon will host the first stage of the 2020 Sport Climbing season. I’m confident, and I’m sure that, all together, we will succeed in putting a smile upon the faces of our climbing family!”

The world awaits the coming success of this and other sporting events to define the “new-normal” for international athletics.

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