Liv Sansoz and Daniel Du Lac victorious in Pitztal
Liv Sansoz and Daniel Du Lac win first stage of Ice World Cup 2001 in Pitztal
|A French Final sealed the first stage of the Ice World Cup 2001 as Liv Sansoz and Daniel Du Lac climbed to victory, demonstrating that class, strength, endurance and competition experience count for a great deal in ice climbing competitions, too. Both Sansoz and Du Lac, well established sports climbing champions, seem to be immensely capable of making the most of these qualities, even when armed with ice axes and crampons. |
The two beat a highly competitive and competent field - 68 athletes participated in the Men's Open, while 24 female athletes necessitated a Women's Open for the first time.
After an Open marked by an Eastern supremacy, with the Ukrainian Evgeny Krivosheitsev and the Russian Pawel Slepnev ahead of the rest, the Semi-final saw a change of leadership with the Frenchmen Stephane Husson and Anthony Lamiche and the Italian Kurt Astner pulling through.
In a Final where none of the competitors topped out of the route, Daniel Du Lac placed first, ahead of his compatriots Stephane Husson and Anthony Lamiche. Dvorak placed fourth, Muller fifth, Steinbrugger sixth, Schranz seventh and Kurt Astner eigth.
Eight women qualified in the Semi-final, and Liv Sansoz topped the list with a clear demonstration of being a cut above the rest. The two Germans Ines Papert and Kirsten Buchmann were next to qualify, ahead of the Italian Anna Torretta and the Russians Kolodkina and Yakimova (fifth equal), and Sdobnikova and Okatieva.
No change in the Final: Liv Sansoz topped out once again (three out of three tops in this competition)and, even though penalised for failing to clip the final quickdraw, won the event. Ines Papert and Kirsten Buchmann of Germany place second and third, while Anna Turretta of Italy placed fourth.
The second stage of the Ice World Cup now moves on to the Italian Valle di Daone next week, where the first of two highly anticipated boulder events will be held. Given the levels of skill and ability demonstrated in Pitztal, Valle di Daone should prove interesting.
> IWC 2nd stage at Valle di Daone