Team GB Kitzbuhel, Photo Victoria NewlandsKitzbuhel by Team GB, Photo Victoria Newlands

Another World Cup over, another mixed bag of emotions. It was my best competition to date but also probably one of the most frustrating.

Kitzbuhel is a beautiful setting; we had a great weekend with a cohesive team, fantastic climbing and some excellent results. In the qualifying rounds, both men and women were in two groups. The GB men sadly didn’t qualify for semi finals, despite putting in great performances. In the girls Leah, Shauna and I made semi finals. I was a bit shocked to go out and flash all the qualifying problems but it was a great feeling! I have to admit that I thought perhaps we were going to have a repeat of the Chongqing round, where eleven women qualified in joint 1st place with a score of 5/5, so I was excited and surprised to discover it was just Alex Puccio and me!

Rest time, PhotoAndreas AufschnaiterRest time, Photo Andreas Aufschnaiter

The next day it was strange being in the last group of athletes to leave isolation. I’m not used to it and I kept thinking I should have been warming up sooner. It was odd to see climbers that I admired  leaving before me in a semi final competition, and scary to think I would have to follow their performances! I was feeling confident though and was really excited. I felt like I was good enough to make finals and maybe this was my window of opportunity.

The slab! Photo Eddie FowkesThe semi final slab! Photo Eddie Fowkes

I ended up in 12th after the semis but I don’t feel that that fairly represents how I climbed. I did the first two problems and got to the last move of the 3rd problem three times, touching the final hold….if I had held that hold, I would have made finals. Putting it like that shows me how close I was and although it makes me frustrated it also gives me the confidence (along with my qualifying round) to pick myself back up and try again. Next round is in Slovenia in just under two weeks…

Problem 3, semi finals, PhotoAndreas AufschnaiterProblem 3 in semi finals, Photo Andreas Aufschnaiter

I may not have had the results I am after yet this year but they are within sight. I think I am capable of making a final and that in itself is progress. Last year I was participating, this year I am competing.

Chalk bag, Photo Andreas AufschnaiterPhoto Andreas Aufschnaiter