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ABS 14 National Qualifiers! - Alex Fritz

ABS 14 National Qualifiers! - Alex Fritz
ABS 14 National Qualifiers! - Alex Fritz
February 23, 2013 - 

The Qualification round for the ABS14 Adult Nationals was yesterday. I went out first in the running order which I believe gave me a bit of an advantage over some other competitors because all of the holds were freshly chalked and had not been climbed yet. After a slow warm up period on possible the coolest warm-up area ever (CityRock expanded and had 5 brand new systems boards), I went out and climbed at my first ever ABS Adult Nationals!

The first problem was a pretty chill and extremely fun slab route. Starting out on the arete, you worked your way up between two really far away stalactite-type holds and a huge ledge foot, continued by a tricky slopey sequence and then finished on two underclings. What was cool about this climb was the fact that the finish holds were with in reach just above the second hold on the problem but because of the angle they were facing, it was almost impossible to skip (with the exception of one really tall dude). I tried for a split second but was smart and took the more fun route to flash the problem!

The second climb was pretty boring straight pulling on slightly bad pinches and crimps. I fell in the middle on my first attempt because I am not good at crimps and tried to open-hand one of them and couldn't hold on. After a short rest I powered through the crimps in a closed-handed position and topped out the climb.

The third climb was by far my favorite of the entire competition (thanks Helt)! Two big moves off the start, I threw into a gaston and threw my feet above my head into a bicycle, then moved through a couple more moves on pockets to a big double sided, from there I heel hooked the right side of the jug and did a big move over the lip to a small slopey crimp, and moved through two more of those into a big move to the sloper finish. I fell twice on this route because I wasn't willing to commit to heel hooking the jug, but then decided to try one last time because I knew I needed another top to get close to qualifying for the next round. I lucked out and the heel worked, allowing me to finish the climb just as they called "TIME TIME!".

The fourth climb was my least favorite of the comp because it was least my style. A bunch of slopey crimps and extremely powerful moves for me gave me a lot of trouble, but after figuring out my own beta, I worked my way to slapping just below the finish hold on my third attempt!

The fifth climb (yes, the FIFTH climb) was nice because I was extremely tired and it was slab climbing and didn't require a lot of upper body or forearm use. After reading the route quickly (only a few holds to choose from) I got on right away and cruised through the first hand-foot-match-mantle start move. After you were standing on the start hold you worked your way across very, very, very small footholds and extremely slopey  edges to an intermediate on the arete and bumped to a small slopey finish hold. My first attempt I felt extremely solid and cruised all the way to the finish but my foot slipped as I hit the finish hold, causing me to fall. My second and third attempts were not as great because I could not get my feet as solid as before. 


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