The Little Flash 2017 Results
It’s the little sibling of Highball’s Big Flash Annual Climbing Festival and puts young climbers centre stage, giving many of them their first experience of a major competition format with cash prizes up for grabs.
Run in one day, junior competitors were split into three age categories (A, B and C). Each category had it’s own qualification round with competitors hoping to score in the top 6 (male and female) so they would qualify for the grand final on the huge DMM Comp Wall.
The event was a huge success, attracting almost 100 young climbers across the 3 categories (30% up on last year).
Director Mike Surtees said ‘We’re really pleased with how the event unfolded. We listened to the feedback we received last year (the first event) and the changes we put in place, like changing to a single day event have really worked well. It was great to see so many psyched young climbers having such a great time, and we’re thankful to all the parents for bringing them along, especially the ones who made long journeys. See you next year!’
The qualifying rounds got underway at 10am with a very busy Youth C category (Born 2005 or younger) as children as young as 6 made their way around the 20 qualification problems (climbs), most with parents in tow for safe supervision.
At 11am, the Youth B category (born 2002& 2003) began their qualification, followed by the older teens (Born 2000 & 2001) at midday. Each category had two hours to climb the 20 problems, ideally in 3 or less attempts – the less attempts you take, the higher your score e.g. you receive 10 points if you climb it on your first attempt (a Flash), but 7 points for 2 attempts.
All finalists had at least 3 hours rest between the end of their qualifying round and the closing of isolation – the place where they go before the start of the final. For some, this was the first experience of a major final and isolation for all 3 finals was a hive of nervous energy and excitement.
In the male competition, the top three competitors, Kai Whaley, Cameron Kemp and Owen Whaley each topped all four problems, with Kai and Cameron flashing them all. This meant the winner was decided by ‘count back’, which uses the qualification score to see who scored highest. In this case Cameron outscored Kai by just 1 points, scoring 188 to Kai’s 187 in the qualifiers.
In the Female final, Edie Carr and Keris Moore made strong starts by flashing the first three problems, with Ayla and Skye topping all 3 to keep the pressure on. But Edie took the title by managing a clean sweep of 4 flashes – impressive! In fact, pretty much all the 6 female finalists were in with a chance of winning until the final problem, which ultimately split the group – great route setting!
The Youth B Final featured a few more local climbers in both gender categories, which was great to see. The winner was again decided by countback as Jake Collins and Ben Stead both flashed all four problems, with Jake winning on countback (a higher qualifying score).
Lucas Diggines won the mini local final, which was between him, Alex, Sam and Lucas’ brother, Coby – who has only been climbing himself a few months – well done to all of you.
The female category had a clear winner, local Wad, Tilly Reed was the only one to top all 4 problems, with persistence really paying off on F2 (see leader boards below). Sophie Henrich edged out Emily by a bonus attempt and Katie Fisher also edged out Alissa Mardle by achieving the bonus on F4 and went this close >< to topping it in the final seconds.
The Youth A Final was last up, starting at 6pm and featured the big guns in the junior climbing world. Neither Male or Female results went to countback, it all came down to their performances in the final.
The problems were a big step up with some challenging (hard!) problems across the board. Joe Czubkowski took the male title after a close fought battle with Toby Chun and Alex Miah. Places 4 to 6 went to Highball’s own John Golder, Michael Gilbert and Bradley Diggines. John and Michael were also in the hunt for a top 3 finish going into M4!
The female final also went down the final problem, with all 5 finalists within touching distance after the first 3. However, Yasmin Roberts was the only one to top the final problem, giving her victory over Lizzie Nicholls who pipped Pippa Watkin by just one bonus attempt.
YOUTH C M/F
YOUTH B M/F
YOUTH A M/F
FULL RESULTS: PDF Download
Mountain Boot Company
For your support with the event.
Sam Lawson – Video
Tommy Matthews – Images
Viking Stage and Lighting
Big thanks to all who competed, parents who drove their children and teams/squads who made the effort to come from other parts of the country.
A big thank you to the Highball Crew for organising and running such a great event.
#TLF18 – date TBC
See you at the Big Flash 2017: 13 to 15 October 2017