The IFSC Bouldering World Cup is right around the corner and is an event you don’t want to miss out on.
This year there is a strong line-up of Canadian climbers. Here are just a few climbers that you definitely want to keep an eye on at the event.
The competition will take place in Toronto on May 30 and 31 in the Thornhill Arena. Tickets are still on sale and can be purchased here.
The always strong 17-year-old Lucas Uchida is one of the top junior competition climbers in the country and a promising youth competitor at the World Cup. Last year, the Toronto climber placed first in the Youth Pan American Bouldering Championships in Mexico City, and two weeks ago he finished on the podium at the Canadian National Lead Climbing Championships in Saanich, B.C.
He placed first in the Youth A Males category and was the third Canadian in the Open Males category.
Jason Holowach finished right behind Uchida and was the fourth Canadian in the Canadian National Lead Climbing Championships. The Saskatchewan climber has represented Canada in numerous IFSC Boulder World Cups and recently placed first in the Alberta Roped Climbing Provincials in Canmore and fourth at the Canadian National Bouldering Championships in Montreal.
Last year, Holowach had an excellent break through performance at the Bouldering World Cup in Toronto, qualifying in 13th place and hopefully he will have another standout performance at the upcoming World Cup. As the owner and president of Grip It Climbing Gym in Saskatchewan, Holowach has successfully managed to incorporate climbing in his entire life and share his passion with the rest of Canada.
Andrew Funk is a champion youth competitor and a rising star in the Canadian climbing world. While Funk was born in Auckland, New Zealand, he moved to Edmonton when he was six and started climbing at eight. Funk recently placed third in the Junior Males category in the Canadian National Lead and Speed Sport Climbing Championships.
Siblings Eric and Elise Sethna have excelled in competition climbing and have multiple finishes on the podium. Last year, 23-year-old Eric Sethna also had a noteworthy performance at the Bouldering World Cup and was one move away from qualifying into the semi.
He recently placed eighth at the National Bouldering Championships, while 21-year-old Elise Sethna was Canada’s National Bouldering Champion in 2012, 2014 and again in 2015.
The pair recently both placed first in the Western Nationals Tour de Bloc at Saskatoon’s Grip It, and they can be expected to give it their best at the upcoming World Cup.
Kerry Briggs is a Canadian competition specialist who has crushed the local and regional Tour de Bloc competitions and is most noted for winning the National Bouldering Championships in 2013.
After studying in Ottawa, Briggs moved back to her hometown of Toronto and is a coach for the youth climbing team at the True North Gym. In 2015, the 27-year-old Toronto climber has had multiple wins in the Tour de Bloc series events and she has been training very hard for the World Cup.
A protégé of Kerry Briggs is Esti Tweg, a young Canadian climber who has started 2015 on a great foot as she is making a name for herself in competition climbing. The Ontario climber is a member of the youth climbing team at True North. Similar to Briggs, Tweg has also had many podium finishes in the Tour de Bloc series events in 2015.
She placed first in the Ontario Youth Provincial Championships at Toronto’s Boulderz in the beginning of the year and finished fifth in the Junior Female category in the Canadian National Lead and Speed Sport Climbing Championships.
Placing ahead of Esti Tweg is Becca Frangos who was the winner of the Junior Female category and placed third in the Open category in the Canadian National Lead and Speed Sport Climbing Championships in Saanich, B.C.
The Alberta climber is a strong indoor and outdoor climber and has sport climbed 5.13 routes in Red Rock Canyon. She is one of the most promising Junior Climbers to compete at the World Cup and it will be interesting to see how well she does at the Adult level.
30-year-old Stacey Weldon is a Canadian climbing veteran who has excelled in both indoor and outdoor rock climbing. The Alberta climber is very involved in the climbing world and when she moved to Kingston to complete her nursing degree, she helped organize the Bouldering Co-op and is also the former Canadian Youth National Team Coach.
Weldon has long been a fixture of the competition scene in Canada, seeing success both as a competitor and a coach. The last time Weldon competed in the Bouldering World Cup in Toronto, she was one of three Canadian women to go through to semi’s and it will be great to see her continue to compete at the World Cup this year.
Sam and Ville Tiukuvaara are two rising Canadian climbers who have recently taken the podium in Tour de Bloc competitions.
They are a very strong brother duo from Ottawa, who are relatively untested at the international level of competitive climbing but have had an excellent year competing in the Tour de Bloc series.
– Written by Gripped’s intern Sophia Vlahos. Stay tuned as we’ll be bringing you more World Cup action as we count down the days to Canada’s biggest climbing event of the years.