The fourth stage of the Lead World Cup 2008 took place in Imst, Austria on 20/09/08 and was won by David Lama and Mina Markovic
It seems as if the 2008 competition season is the one for photo finishes. Just like in Bern last week, the fourth stage in Imst was decided by holds touched or held and both the men's and women's final came to the wire in the space of a couple of centimeters and was eventually won by Mina Markovic and David Lama.
The 20 year old from Slovenia won her first ever World Cup by beating the great home favorite, 15 year old Johanna Ernst (seeing that Angela Eiter was absent due to injury. After celebrating her comeback in style by winning in Bern, teammate Maja Vidmar had to make do with 3rd overall when she fell from the penultimate hold.
David Lama on the other-hand, finally free from chasing Kilian Fischhuber in the Bouldering World Cup, won the first Lead competition he decided to take part in this season thanks to a dyno for a hold which Ramon Julian Puigblanque didn't even attempt. The Canadian and North American Champion Sean Mccoll fell a few moves lower and produced his best ever World Cup performance to finish third overall, a hair's breadth away from Dutchman Jorg Verhoeven, while Cedric Lachat and Tomas Mrazek placed 5th equal after finishing on the same hold which young Austrian hope Jakob Schubert had only managed to touch.
Jorg Verhoeven currently leads the 2008 ranking with 275 points, a mere 4 points ahead of Tomas Mrazek from the Czech Republic, while Anma is third and Puigblanque 4th. Usobiaga, who placed a disastrous 22nd in Imst, trails the leader by 85 points and although mathematically all is still up for grabs, there is absolutely no room for error in these final phases. The same obviously holds true for the women's event, even-though it seems difficult to imagine how Johanna Ernst could lose her world domination, at a mere 15 years of age!
The next stage of the Lead World Cup will take place in Puurs, Belgium on 26 and 27 September, a fortnight before the European Championships scheduled for 15 - 18 October in Paris...
Results men - 4th stage World Cup Lead 2008 - Imst 1 David Lama AUT 2 Ramón Julian Puigblanque ESP 3 Sean Mccoll CAN 4 Jorg Verhoeven NED 5 Cédric Lachat SUI 5 Tomás Mrázek CZE 7 Jakob Schubert AUT 8 Klemen Becan SLO 9 Valeriy Kryukov UKR 10 Thomas Ballet FRA 11 Fabien Dugit FRA 12 Romain Desgranges FRA 13 Sachi Anma JPN 13 Magnus Midtboe NOR 15 Jérôme De Boeck BEL 15 Ivan Kaurov RUS 15 Mario Lechner AUT 18 Fabien Comina FRA 18 Michaël Fuselier FRA 18 Eric Lopez Mateos ESP 21 Flavien Guerimand FRA 22 Jan Hojer GER 22 Thomas Tauporn GER 22 Patxi Usobiaga Lakunza ESP 25 Marco Antonio Jubes Angarita ESP 26 Gabor Szekely HUN 27 Pablo Barbero Alfonso ESP 28 Mikhail Chernikov RUS full results
Results women - 4th stage World Cup Lead 2008 - Imst 1 Mina Markovic SLO 2 Johanna Ernst AUT 3 Maja Vidmar SLO 4 Caroline Ciavaldini FRA 5 Muriel Sarkany BEL 6 Akiyo Noguchi JPN 7 Evgenia Malamid RUS 8 Olga Shalagina UKR 9 Alexandra Eyer SUI 10 Yana Chereshneva RUS 10 Katharina Saurwein AUT 12 Irati Anda Villanueva ESP 13 Natalija Gros SLO 14 Bettina Schoepf AUT 15 Charlotte Durif FRA 16 Barbara Bacher AUT 17 Dinara Fakhritdinova RUS 18 Jenny Lavarda ITA 19 Kinga Ociepka POL 20 Juliane Wurm GER full results