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First Repeat of Patxitxulo 5.14d/15a for Anak Verhoeven in Spain

The top climber retired from competitions earlier this year

Belgian crusher Anak Verhoeven has climbed Patxitxulo 5.14d/15a at Oliana in Oliana for the route’s first repeat. It was her first big send after recovering from an injured finger last year.

Patxitxulo climbs the cruxes of two, more popular, hard Oliana lines: Papichulo and Joe Blau. Patsi Usobiaga made the first ascent in 2017 and suggested 5.14d/15a, which Verhoeven, 25, confirmed.

This spring, Verhoeven announced that she’s leaving the world of competition climbing. She was a consistent presence on the World Cup circuit from 2013 to 2019, and is walking away with three gold medals, and a lot of top-three finishes.

In 2014, she became the European Junior Champion at the Edinburgh event. In 2015, she won the World Youth Championship in Italy, where she competed for the last time as a junior. In the same year, she finished fourth in her first open comp.

In 2016, she competed at the World Championships in Paris, where she finished in second after Janja Garnbret. She then won bronze at the Lead Climbing World Cup. Verhoeven ended the year as number one on the IFSC world ranking list. In 2017, she won both the World Games and IFSC Climbing European Championships.

In September 2017, she made the first ascent of Sang Neuf 5.14d at Pierrot Beach in France, becoming the first woman to make the FA at the grade. She then made the first ascent of Sweet Neuf, which links Sang Neuf with the 25-metre second-pitch of Home Sweet Home 5.14c/d and suggested 5.15a. She became the second woman to climb 5.15a after Margo Hayes and the first to claim a first ascent at the grade.

In June 2019, Cédric Lachat made the second ascend of Sweet Neuf and confirmed the grade. In December 2017, Verhoven established and made the FA of Ciudad de Dios pa la Enmienda 5.14d/15a in Santa Linya, Spain. In November 2019, she climbed her second 5.15a with Joe Mama in Oliana, Spain.

Watch Verhoeven climb repeat Joe Mama 5.15a