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Arco 2015, Day One: Canadians Advance to Semi-Finals

The first day of competition at the World Youth Climbing Championships in Arco, Italy is complete.

By Shane Murdoch

Due to the large number of competitors, the qualifications for bouldering have been split over two days. All of the females qualified today and all the males qualify tomorrow.

Athletes compete in separate categories by age and gender. Competitors that turn 14 or 15 this year are in the Youth-B category. The 16- and 17-year-old climbers are in Youth-A and the 18- and 19-year-old climbers are in the Junior category.

The top 20 athletes in each category advance to the semi-final round on Sunday. The top six from semi-finals will advance to finals on Monday.

Canada has 12 female athletes competing in bouldering. In Female Youth B, Quebec’s Courtney Belleau, B.C.’s Sophie Buitendyk and Ontario’s Cat Carkner and Bronwen Karnin. In Female Youth A, Ontario’s Justine McCarney and Beth Vince, Alberta’s Eva Thompson and B.C.’s Julie Massullo. And in Female Junior was B.C.’s Hannah Block, Alberta’s Sarah and Becca Frangos and Ontario’s Esti Tweg.

All of the athletes did very well in a tough field on some difficult problems. Four Canadians have advanced to semi-finals on Sunday. Sophie and Eva both finished in 17th in their respective categories. Becca and Beth both finished in 20th.

There is a clear leader in each category after today. All three leaders were the only ones to top all four of their problems. Ashima Shiraishi from the U.S. topped her four Youth B problems in nine attempts. Janja Garnbret from Slovania topped four in five and Miho Nonaka from Japan leads the Junior category with four tops in five.

Male qualifiers start tomorrow at 10 a.m. Arco time. For a list of all Canadian competitors, visit here.

[shareprints gallery_id=”14678″ gallery_type=”thumb_slider” gallery_position=”pos_center” gallery_width=”width_100″ image_size=”large” image_padding=”0″ theme=”dark” image_hover=”false” lightbox_type=”slide” titles=”true” captions=”true” descriptions=”true” comments=”true” sharing=”true”]– All photos by Shane Murdoch, a B.C.-based climber and photographer covering the Arco competition for Gripped.