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    Notes and advice from Sean McColl.

Canadian TDB Nationals

Since the French National Championships, I’ve been pretty busy. The French Nationals marked the first competition of 5 in 5 weeks. In order, my competitions were/are:
  • French National Championships
  • Canadian Open Regionals
  • Canadian National Championships
  • Log-Dragomer World Cup
  • Vienna World Cup
All these comps are on back to back weekends and I’m past the halfway point and feeling great. I know my last post was just after the French Nationals and honestly it’s been because I’ve been feeling very sick. The week in between the 1st and second competition, I could feel myself getting sick, so I took off training the Tuesday, and did a mild session on Wednesday. Thursday, Mathilde and I were headed to Victoria for the roped regionals but I knew the competition was going to be much easier than the rest. It turns out I was the only one in my category, so I am now the Canadian Regional open Lead AND Speed champion. I also set a competition and personal best on the official 15m speed wall at 12.345 seconds!! Awesome eh 🙂 Mathilde Becerra also won for the women although being French; she can’t really claim the title either. In between Victoria and Montreal, I was even sicker…. I could barely move my body for 2 days straight and then started taking 4-6 extra strength time release Tylenol so my head wasn’t throbbing all day… I can safely say that by competition morning, I felt over 75% which was great. [singlepic id=344 w=400 h=240 float=left] Onto the biggest competition of this post, TDB Nationals in Montreal Canada. Mathilde and I went out there the next Thursday all day with my mom and spend Friday day just cruising the streets of Montreal. It was cool to be back there and see the city. We went to Starbucks a handful of times and I finally bought my perplexusEpic (pictured left). If you don’t know what it is, click the LINK. It’s one of the coolest puzzles I’ve played with in a long time. It has a metal ball inside, and you have to navigate it through 125 steps to the finish. It uses physics and control. Some steps are harder than others, and others are just annoying. In about 5 minutes, I made it to level 10, and 10 minutes, to about 20. At 25, there’s a hard stage and even after player with it for probably 2 hours total now, my record is 45 🙂 Onto the climbing part… Qualifications were nice. I ended up flashing all the problems and felt pretty good. The hardest part was the warm up area was a bit under par. I felt like there weren’t enough holds on the walls to make good problems. I guess they figured that out because when isolation opened for finals, they were putting more holds on the wall! [singlepic id=343 w=400 h=240 float=right] Finals were in the evening of the second day, so we walked around town after having a super nice brunch. By the time we were back at the competition ready for finals, I was feeling good. I could feel that even before warming up for finals I felt good. The whole warm up I felt good, and I thought if I didn’t perform to my full ability, I wouldn’t have known what to say. I came out, and almost slipped off the last move of the first boulder, but after that I felt solid. I flashed boulder after boulder and I know they had been done. I could hear the crowd cheering for competitors before me, and even after doing my 4th flash on problem 4, I sat down and a minute later could hear Sebastian topping problem 5. This meant, I had to do all the problem, I knew he had already done all 5. I already knew, or guessed, that he had fallen at least a few times. While waiting in the chair for problem 5, I heard behind me Alex Johnson from the states flash the problem. I also knew he had fallen a couple of times, which meant I HAD to do the problem, but in 1, 2, or maybe 3 tries. I turned around, and I could feel myself getting more and more nervous. In my head, I knew I could do the problem, and I also knew I had to do it. The problem was simple, a couple hard moves at the bottom, then a dyno, and then a big last move to a jug finish. I executed very well, and was glad. Before I knew it, I was doing the dyno, sticking it and could feel myself topping the problem. I grabbed the last hold with my right hand and even before matching I started waving at the crowd. I knew I had to match, and maybe it was just for a little more anticipation. I matched, grabbed the rail and waved a couple more times before jumping down. I guessed Alex Johnson and Sebastian Lazure had come 2nd and 3rd as they had also done them all, but I wasn’t sure in what order. I immediately congratulated them both and gave a final wave to the crowd. I couldn’t have been happier; I had succeeded in my goal for the competition, the title. It’s not like anyone else suspected anything less, especially with some of the other very strong climbers from Canada not attending. If Yves wasn’t injured and Josh had come, this blog post might have been longer… I’ve now travelled back to Europe, through Toulouse, and onto Slovenia for the World Cup that starts tomorrow. I’m 6th in the running order and pretty excited. I came 2nd at French Nationals, won a lead comp, and then won my own Nationals. I feel light, strong, fit and motivated. One can only hope that I climb my best in this competition, and who knows….  

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    I wonder where you started with the maze 😛


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