The seventh competition of the IFSC World Cup Series 2022 took place last night in Villars, Switzerland. Slovenian high-flyer Janja Garnbret claimed her 50th World Cup medal with a win in the lead discipline, while Japan's Taisei Homma celebrated his first men's World Cup win.

With a score of 36+, Tasei Homma climbed to the top step of the podium in the men's final and claimed his first World Cup gold medal. It is the second podium finish for the Japanese athlete, who won silver at the IFSC Lead World Cup in Xiamen 2019. He made it to the final in Innsbruck last weekend, but was far from the podium with his ninth place.

«In Innsbruck I was very disappointed with my result, so I wanted to do my best this time. I wasn't that happy in the semifinals, but I got a lot of motivating messages from friends in Japan, which is why I wanted to go full throttle in the final.»

Taisei Homma

Second place went to last week's bronze medalist, American Jesse Grupper, who secured the silver medal with 34+ points. Grupper took his second World Cup medal home with him.

Highlights of the lead final

His teammate, Olympian Colin Duffy, finished third with 34 points, earning his third medal of the season. Duffy made history last weekend by becoming the first person ever to win both bouldering and lead in a competition.

The German Yannick Flohé with 33 points just missed the podium in fourth place. The strongest Swiss was Sascha Lehmann, who finished 19th in Villars.

The podium at the Lead World Cup in Villars 2022 (Photo Lena Drapella/IFSC)
The podium at the Lead World Cup in Villars 2022 (Photo Lena Drapella/IFSC)

Janja Garnbret continues her dominance

Slovenian Olympian Janja Garnbret secured the only top of the night, standing on an IFSC World Cup podium for the fiftieth time. She won gold a total of 34 times, 20 of them in the lead discipline.

«I feel great, that was one of the best routes of the competition. I was in full flow and just had fun climbing.»

Janja Garnbret

«In Innsbruck I felt a bit rusty because I didn't climb any competitions this year, with the exception of Meiringen, but after the semifinals I felt in the flow. The route was a bit easier than in Innsbruck, had a few tricky passages where you had to be careful. However, the crux of the route lay in the last moves before the top,” adds Janja Garnbret.

Team USA hot on Garnbrett's heels

Olympian Brooke Raboutou of the USA placed second with 37+ points, earning the silver medal. The American has had a stellar season so far, having won three medals in bouldering and two in lead.

Natalia Grossman, Raboutou's teammate and best friend, secured the bronze medal with 35+ points. Grossman stood on a World Cup podium for the 15th time in Villars, having won eight medals in 2021 and seven medals so far this season.

Italy's Olympian Laura Rogora was fourth with 31+ points, followed by France's Manon Hily in fifth with 28+ points. A second try was awarded to Hily in tonight's final after a technical incident where she was not given enough rope. Olympian Chaehyun Seo of South Korea finished sixth with 17+ points, while Japan's Ryu Nakagawa and Natsuki Tanii, also with 17+, finished seventh and eighth respectively.

Janja Garnbret won gold for the 34th time in Villars. (Image: Lena Drapella/IFSC)
Janja Garnbret won gold for the 34th time in Villars. (Image: Lena Drapella/IFSC)

The next edition of the IFSC World Cup Series 2022 will be held in Chamonix (France), where from July 8th to 10th there will be competitions in the disciplines of lead and speed. Information and live streams will be published on in due course.

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Credits: Cover picture Lena Drapella/IFSC