| ||The second stage of Ice World Cup is currently being held in the Italian Valle di Daone, and today's Semifinal proved to be a spectacular display of dry tooling and ice bouldering at its best. Eighteen male and eighteen female athletes, all qualifiers from yesterday's Open, competed for one of the eight places in tomorrow's Final. Climbing top-rope, the athletes were allowed 6 minutes for each of their two boulder problems. |
Daniel Dulac during the competition - photo ice-time.com
Steep and technical is the name of the game, and Stephane Husson of France seems to know the score. Twisting and turning, Hussan was the only athlete to succeed on both boulders and now leads the provisional ranking with his outstanding two tops. He is followed by Dimitri Bytchkov and Mauro 'Bubu' Bole who waved to the crowed before topping out, both joint second. The Frenchman Anthony Lamiche is, provisional fourth and Tim Emmett of Great Britain, fifth. Last week's winner Daniel Dulac started badly on the first boulder and placed sixth, while Evgeny Krivosheitsev and Diego Mabboni placed seventh and eighth respectively.
The ice structure in Valle di Daone - photo ice-time.com
With startling ease Liv Sansoz cruised to the top of both boulders, but this performance was matched by the Italian Mountain Guide Nadia Dimai, Sandra Wielebnowski of Austria and Ildi Pellissier of Germany. The four are joined by Ines Papert (GER), Olga Epiphanova (RUS), Margarita Kolodkina (RUS) and Anna Torretta (ITA).
All that is left to do now is wait for tomorrow's Final, due to start at 10.00am. It promises to be a great spectacle, especially because the ice structure, a bizarre mix of wooden panels, bolt-on-holds ice curtains and hanging drips, is in prime condition. The athletes have already sharpened their picks and crampons, ready for even the smallest of edges. But more of this tomorrow, straight from Valle di Daone..