This past weekend, September 23 and 24th, ABS Nationals were held in Colorado Springs. Ethan Pringle, Eric Sanchez and a number of Zero Gravity members headed to one of the biggest bouldering competitions in America.
“This was by far the deepest field of amazing climbers at an ABS Open Nationals,” said Zero Gravity coach Scot Jenerik. “When you have someone like Ethan Pringle not make the top 20 you know it’s tough.”
Pringle felt strong going into the comp despite the large array of talented young climbers. Unfortunately, he made a few costly mistakes in qaulifiers. “I really really should have topped out #3,” said Pringle. “I should have done the correct beta on #3…my foot kept slipping on #5 as well.”
The competition at the ABS is notoriously difficult. Daniel Woods and Alex Puccio have won seven of the past nine ABS comps. Other exceptional boulderers like Paul Robinson, who won this year’s Hueco Rock Rodeo, and Dave Graham both failed to make finals. Touchstone Zero Gravity team members Cicada Jenerik and Joshua Levin made Semi Finals and finished 19th on their 19th birthdays. “Almost like it was planned that way,” said Jenerik.
“Our Sub-Zero Dylan Barks (one of my remote-coaching athletes) flashed all of the qualifiers and was in first going into semis, but then misread one problem and dropped to 10th in semis and just missed finals. Connor Everton missed semis by two moves ending up 25th and Liam Vance missed by 5 moves and was 28th but both climbed exceptionally well.” said Jenerik. “Sera Busse was 29th in a very tough female field as well. Aged out Zero Gravity teammates Will Roderick was 30th and Eric Sanchez placed 50th.”
Cicada, Josh, Connor and Liam will be joined by eleven more Zero Gravity teammates this Friday, February 28 for the start of the USA Climbing Youth ABS National Championships which will be held at the same venue in Colorado Springs, CO. “The team is in good position to make a run for Team National Champions as well. We have athletes in 9 of the 10 categories and all of them are contenders,” said Jenerik.
Recently, the team climbed at Dogpatch, where they climbed on the new walls. “We did also run a short comp simulation where they had 4 minutes to read and climb a problem which was at a grade at their limit, then a 4 minute rest and then another problem within 4 minutes,” said Jenerik. “This exactly simulates the competition format they will have at Nationals. After the first set of this we discussed positives and negatives of their performance not just on the wall but in tactical how they were using the 4 minutes and executing the problems. Then we repeated the comp simulation on new problems.”
A replay of the finals is available soon on the Louder Than 11 page.