I first met up with Italian Gabriele Moroni, 25, two years ago it was on the other side of the world during Petzl’s Rock Trip in Getu Valley China. Besides having perfect English and negating my perceived perception that all Italians had dark hair, Gabriele stuck out in my mind from his incredible climbing performance. Gabri, as his close friends call him, was one of the only among a trove of talented athletes in attendance to send the Rock Trip’s “Ultimate Route” Coup de Bambou, 9a (14d). When I saw Gabri again this spring in Catalunya Spain he seemed to be much on the same path, sending hard lines all over the world with a tenacity and humility that is elegantly honed by few. With his climbing routes based in competition, Gabri has been crowned National and World Youth Champion many times over, he has taken a his brute strength and calm head to tackle the world’s hardest routes. With the support of companies like Five Ten, E9 and Petzl, Gabri’s ability to focus on outdoor climbing has indeed been beneficial with over 70 sends of routes graded 8c(14b)-9a(14d) and boulders as hard as 8b+ (V14). Here Gabri takes five to tell me about his psyched to climb in every style, why gingers may become extinct and what he plans to do about it.
1. What’s your secret to speaking multiple different languages?
Haha, I don't know really. I travel a lot and chat with many people from all around the world. And of course I pay attention and listen when foreign people are talking, so I try to understand them and store as many words I can.
2. What language has the best slang?
Definitely American English! Italian doesn't have real slang, but many dialects. But, me and my friends are trying to introduce slang in the climbing community!
3. Favorite type of pasta?
I would say Spaghetti Carbonara, basically Spaghetti with a eggs, bacon, and parmesan cheese sauce!! It’s good, tasty, and very fast to make.
4. If you were a type of pasta what would you be?
Hahaha I guess some kind of pasta with tomato sauce!?!...
5. Is it possible to diet in Italy?
Yes! It is much easier than dieting in the US! Big breakfasts, burgers and Mexican food!! I miss that!
6. Do Gingers (red-heads) have more fun?
Do you know we (Gingers) are on our way to extinction? So for all the red head chicks around here... let's have fun! It is for a good cause!
7. Best part about road trips in the winter/ worst part?
Best part is climbing in the sun, sending a project and then drinking a beer at the end of the day! Worst part is taking extra rest days due to the rain or snow...
8. Any pre-send rituals, post-send fiestas?
I always put the left shoe on first since 10 years ago. Sending a hard climb is always a good reason to party, or at least celebrating with some drinks!
9. Music while climbing yay or nay?
Only when I'm training. Some good tunes will help me get psyched!
10. If you could climb in anyone’s style who would it be?
Daniel Woods! He has crazy core strength, a controlled style and is dynamic when he needs to be. And I would like to be more flexible, so I would say Adam Ondra too!
11. Best type of person to travel with/ worst type?
First it has to be a good friend that has a good attitude and is motivated to climb and hang out! I don't like to travel with selfish people who don't care about other people. Or people that are not able to fit in with the group of people they are traveling with.
12. If you weren’t climbing all the time what would you do?
I think I would be working and living a common life. But luckily climbing saved me, and I can do what I love!
13. What was your very first pair of climbing shoes, and what are you wearing on your project right now?
I think it was an old pair of Boreal kids shoes. I remember they were red. Right now I'm wearing my all time favourite, DRAGON ftw!!