Tokyo Olympic Games: Women’s Qualification
- Wednesday 4th August 2021
Janja Garnbret qualified in first place for the Women’s finals ahead of Chaehyun Seo and Miho Nonaka.
Day two of the sport climbing at the Tokyo Olympic Games was all about the women’s qualification. As with the men’s qualification yesterday the twenty qualified women faced two runs each on the speed wall, then four blocs on the bouldering wall and then finally a lead route. The top eight climbers will then progress into the women’s final round on Friday.
The much-anticipated showdown between the top three seeds, Janja Garnbret (SLO), Akiyo Noguchi (JPN) and Shauna Coxsey (GBR), and some on-form contenders in the chasing pack such as 5th seed Miho Nonaka (JPN) and 7th seed Brooke Raboutou (USA) promised to be a real corker. As with the men’s qualification yesterday, the results weren’t quite as expected.
Unsurprisingly, the opening speed round was convincingly won by Aleksandra Miroslaw (POL) who put down a scorching run of 6.97secs; a fraction outside the current world record. Anouck Jaubert (FRA) took second with 7.12secs and Yiling Song (CHN) third with 7.46secs.
The fastest run for the non-speed specialists went to Miho Nonaka who finished in 4th with 7.55secs ahead of her 9th placed team-mate Akiyo Noguchi who finished with 8.23secs. Brooke Raboutou finished in 12th with 8.67secs ahead of 14th-placed Janja Garnbret who posted a disappointing best time of 9.44secs after slips in both of her runs. Shauna Coxsey finished in 16th with 9.65secs.
After her disappointing speed runs Janja Garnbret put the hammer down hard in the bouldering flashing all four problems to finish in first place; a very convincing effort as widely expected. On-form Brooke Raboutou finished in second place with three tops in four attempts and Akiyo Noguchi in third also with three tops in five attempts. Shauna Coxsey, clearly relishing her time on the mats again, posted a spirited performance to finish in fourth with two tops and two zones.
Chaehyun Seo (KOR) also topped two problems (in five attempts) and finished in 5th whilst Laura Rogora (ITA) and Miho Nonaka finished in 7th and 8th respectively.
Chaehyun Seo rocked the lead game when she exploded onto the scene a couple of years ago; she replicated that form in the lead qualifier taking first place with an incredibly strong performance in which she almost topped the route before falling at 40+. Second place went to Jessa Pilz (AUT) who also posted a very solid effort before falling off at 33+. Miho Nonaka scooped the third spot falling at 30+.
Against all the odds and undoubtedly the shock of the day was Janja Garnbret who finished lead in 4th place having fallen off move 30. Garnbret finished narrowly ahead of Vicktoria Meshkova (ROC) and Akiyo Noguchi; Meshkova and Noguchi finished in 5th and 6th falling at 29+ and 27+ respectively.
Also falling earlier than expected given their recent strong lead form were Brooke Raboutou and Laura Rogora; their 8th and 10th place finishes respectively being considerably lower than many had anticipated. Shauna Coxsey climbed smoothly falling before suddenly off move 21; she finished in 13th place.
Despite finishing lower than expected in both speed and lead top seed Janja Garbret finished in top place on 56 points. Thanks to winning lead and placing well in bouldering second place went to 10th seed Chaehyun Seo who finished with 85 points. Fifth seed Miho Nonaka finished in 3rd with 96(pts).
Second seed Akiyo Noguchi finished in 4th place with 162(pts) ahead of 7th seed Brooke Raboutou. The remaining qualification places for Friday’s final went to Jessica Pilz (198pts), Aleksandra Miroslaw (380pts) and Anouck Jaubert (390pts).
Sadly, Shauna Coxsey finished in 10th place just outside the cut for the finals with 832 pts. Having previously announced her retirement from competitions, Coxsey clearly enjoyed her final day despite having suffered from a number of injuries since she qualified for the Tokyo Games in third place in 2019. She leaves competitions with an outstanding record; Britain’s most successful competition climber ever.