Oulu, UIAA

Preview: Penultimate round of European series in Finland

Oulu, the largest city in northern Finland, marks five years of hosting UIAA-sanctioned ice climbing competitions on Saturday 3 February with the hosting of the penultimate round of the UIAA Ice Climbing European Continental Open series. Organised in collaboration with FINICE, the event will feature both senior and youth categories.

The finals of the competition will be live streamed from 16:45 local time. Please refer to the event programme for further details. The YouTube stream link is available here:

The weekend could be decisive for the overall European series standings. Only one round of competition remains which is a first visit to Sunderland in the north east of England next weekend, 10 February.

Registrations currently come from the following countries:
Czech Republic (1), Finland (19), Great Britain (8), Ireland (1), Japan (3), Lichtenstein (5), the Netherlands (2), Poland (7), Romania (1), Slovakia (1), Spain (4), Switzerland (1), United States (4)

Of the top five female athletes, three are in attendance. Marianne van der Steen (327 points) with two golds and a silver to her name from four events will seek to maintain her significant lead. Her nearest competing rival is Haruko Takeuchi (222 points). The Japanese athlete has podiumed once this season and performed impressively at last weekend’s World Cup in Saas-Fee when reaching both the lead and speed finals. On 203 points, Olga Kosek of Poland has two second places in the Continental Open to date.

In the men’s competition, and in terms of the European Tour series, with only two of the top five set to feature in Oulu it is likely that either Spain’s Javier Cano Blazquez (270 pts) or Great Britain’s Will Morris (226) will take the series. Blazquez has two podiums (a gold and a silver) while Morris will seek to build on a silver and a bronze.

However, many more athletes will have their sights on European Cup success in Oulu.




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