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9-Pitch Speed Climbing

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A nine-pitch, fully bolted, 5.10a climb in Colorado’s Royal Gorge was the scene of a high-stakes big-wall sport-climbing race in the 2004 Go Fast Games. Brian Gallant and Mike Johnson of Colorado Springs were the quickest of 16 teams to race up the 1,000-foot granitic wall, taking a $1,000 first prize with their 1 hour 12 minute climb. One minute behind were Wayne Crill and Clayton Reagan of Fort Collins, followed by Fred Knapp and Alan Lester of Boulder. Dean Potter and Adam Stack raced up the wall in just 42 minutes but were disqualified for breaking the competition’s rule against simulclimbing. Long-time Colorado climber Hank Caylor organized the competition at the Go Fast Games and bolted the Clean Dan Memorial Route (named for the late Dan Grandusky of Boulder) for last year’s first Go Fast Games. The Games also featured 140 B.A.S.E. jumpers leaping from the 1,053-foot-high Royal Gorge bridge and Dean Potter “highlining” on a slackline 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River. Both B.A.S.E. jumping and climbing are normally illegal in Royal Gorge, but are available to invitees during the Go Fast Games.