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Sascha Lehmann at the European Lead Championship, Moscow 2020 - qualification
Photo by Leo Zhukov / Climbing Federation of Russia
20-year-old Viktoriia Meshkova, 2020 European Champion Lead & Boulder
Photo by Leo Zhukov / Climbing Federation of Russia

Viktoriia Meshkova, Sascha Lehmann European Lead Champions 2020


In Moscow earlier today Viktoriia Meshkova from Russia and Sascha Lehmann from Switzerland won the 2020 European Lead Championship.

Viktoriia Meshkova wrote climbing history in Moscow earlier today by claiming the European Lead Champion title, incredibly a mere two days after having been crowned European Boulder Champion. Performing under what must have been intense pressure in front of her home crowd, the 20-year-old Russian set out last, knowing full-well that her future lay in her own hands.

Meshkova's competitors had all fared well on the perfectly set route, with first out Hannah Meul impressing for her tenacity through the crux section, and Molly Thompson-Smith leaving all startled by her raw power. The Englishwoman was the first to enter the headwall and her highpoint remained unmatched until Eliska Adamovska from the Czech Republic cruised her way effortlessly past the tiny crimps and on to the last move. The 19-year-old glanced at the clock, composed herself and then made the menacing dyno left to final last hold… she touched it, but swung away uncontrollably.

A few minutes later Meshkova powered her way onto the headwall, too, and leapt to the final hold only touch it - imperceptibly to the naked eye - with her fingertips and take the plunge. For a moment there was high drama in Moscow as it seemed unclear who the winner was, to make matters worse the top two had also been perfectly tied after the Semifinal, but the leaderboard immediately cleared things up: Meshkova won the European double thanks to reaching the penultimate hold in 3:53, compared to the 4:35 needed by Adamovska.

The men’s final proved just as fast and furious as the women’s. Marcus Nimrod from Israel set off first and, climbing without any pressure whatsoever and evidently on a roll, set a highpoint which proved too high for the next four finalists. It was the most decorated man in the finals, Switzerland’s Sascha Lehmann, who finally broke the deadlock; climbing more impressively than ever before, the 22-year-old made it to one move from the top before falling and whooping for joy. His performance, he knew it, had been practically perfect, so much so that the remaining three athletes all fell lower. Dmitrii Fakirianov reached the same hold as Nimrod to take bronze while Nicolas Colin, after risking it all on the spectacular dyno low down, somehow managed to battle his way ever upwards, before finally powering out just a few moves below Lehmann and take silver.

While it is true that the field was depleted of many big names in the competition circuit as various nations including Italy, France, Spain and Austria had decided against sending their athletes to Moscow due to the Coronavirus pandemic, it has to be said that the performances of the athletes, the route setting and the competitions in general lined up by the Russian Climbing Federation have been world-class. After five days of non-stop climbing the athletes will have a well-earned rest day tomorrow, before starting the Combined event and gunning for the last two Olympic tickets.

Results female
1 Viktoriia Meshkova RUS 36+ (3:53)
2 Eliska Adamovska CZE 36+ (4:35)
3 Molly Thompson-Smith GBR 31
4 Hannah Meul GER 30+
5 Olesya Prosekova RUS 30
6 Daria Mezentseva RUS 28+
7 Nika Potapova UKR 18+
8 Marketa Janosova CZE 11
9 Michaela Smetanova CZE
10 Elena Krasovskaia RUS
11 Stasa Gejo SRB
12 Noa Shiran ISR
13 Lucia Dörffel GER
14 Vanda Michalkova SVK
15 Anna Zaikina RUS
16 Vana Piccini CRO
17 Ayala Kerem ISR
18 Naama Yohai ISR
19 Katherine Choong SUI
20 Daria Veretenina RUS
21 Tereza Širůčková CZE
22 Nikola Kralikova CZE
23 Natalia Kalucka POL
24 Yevheniia Cherniavska UKR
25 Chloe Caulier BEL
26 Alma Bestvater GER
27 Afra Hönig GER
28 Aleksandra Kalucka POL
29 Eliška Bulenová CZE
30 Yelyzaveta Lavrykova UKR
31 Patrycja Chudziak POL
32 Anna Brozek POL

Results male
1 Sascha Lehmann SUI 41+
2 Nicolas Collin BEL 38+
3 Dmitrii Fakirianov RUS 37+
4 Nimrod Marcus ISR 37+
5 Hannes Puman SWE 34+
6 Martin Stranik CZE 33+
7 Anze Peharc SLO 32+
8 Vladislav Shevchenko RUS 32+
9 Yuval Shemla ISR
10 Alex Khazanov ISR
11 Dylan Chuat SUI
12 William Bosi GBR
13 Simon Lorenzi BEL
14 Dmitrii Popov RUS
15 Simon Potucek CZE
16 Tomas Plevko SVK
17 Stepan Volf CZE
18 Fedir Samoilov UKR
19 Stepan Potucek CZE
20 Nikola Kramaric CRO
21 Jakub Konecny CZE
22 Kipras Baltrunas LTU
23 Peter Kuric SVK
24 Rolf Fredrik Serlachius SWE
25 Aleksei Rubtsov RUS
26 Sergei Luzhetskii RUS
27 Ram Levin ISR
28 Jernej Kruder SLO
29 Edvards Gruzitis LAT
30 Rolands Rugens LAT
31 Nikolai Iarilovets RUS
32 Leonid Osadchyi UKR
33 Geva Levin ISR
34 Carmel Raz Romeo ISR
35 Mykhayil Tkachuk UKR
36 Eduardas Jeriomenko LTU
37 Jan Kriz CZE
38 Bohdan Botnar UKR
38 Danyil Boldyrev UKR
40 Marcin Dzienski POL


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