Rock Junior and the great game of climbing

Photo by Nicholas Hobley /

Photo by Nicholas Hobley /

The 8th Rock Junior competition on June 6-7, 2009, in Arco was a triumph of the game of climbing. Once again this is an unmissable event for youth climbing and for the hundreds of youngsters who, with their parents, assaulted the Climbing Stadium in Garda Trentino, Italy.

When: Saturday 6 and Sunday 7 June 2009Where: Arco Climbing Stadium (Garda Trentino, Italy)What: the European Youth Climbing FestivalWho: young climbers aged 5 - 13 and their familiesHow: discover the game of climbing, the rocks and nature around ArcoOrganisation:Rock Master Association

Arco 7 June 2009. No holds were barred at today's Rock Junior. Because nothing can stop the great game of climbing. Just like there is nothing that can stop the desire to climb of the crowd of youngsters (aged 5 - 13) who, together with their parents, joyfully invaded the Climbing Stadium in Arco. Was it perhaps due to this air of festivity and this energy that the sun, quite possibly touched, decided to smile and shine on all? The bursts of rain during yesterday's first day had certainly done nothing to dampen the enthusiasm for this great game... It was difficult not to smile and not to be taken in by this festive atmosphere. A walk through the crowd, or a quick glance in any corner of the legendary Rock Master wall, sufficed. Pink, the colour of the 8th Rock Junior, abounded everywhere. And children climbed everywhere. Yes, children climbed to the rhythm of a party during this Rock Junior! Crowds of youngsters swarmed the small walls of the Kid's Rock and no one, simply no one, gave up. And everyone, simply everyone, lived their brief moment as chief climbers. In the meantime, the Cuccagna climb sweet pole handed out gifts to small and big alike. While, high above their heads on the magnificent ferrata suspended between the trees, a never ending row of explorers tried out the Climbing Campus in search of adventure. While all this was going on the climbers competing in the Under 14 Cup gave it their all on the massive Rock Master climbing wall which will host the next World Championship in 2011. The young Rock Junior athletes took part with determination, seriousness and an amazing display of technique. So much so that, from this important and historic viewpoint, one can easily state that a new generation of climbers is in the making which will certainly provideclimbing with plenty of new emotions. These young climbing champions came from 17 different countries, but it seemed as if they all spoke the same language. A sort of sporting Esperanto: the youngsters seemed to speak fluently that universal climbing language comprised of impossible balance, power and the desire to reach the summit. The youngsters also seemed to know the competition rules perfectly which, inevitably, provided both plenty of joy and also small disappointments. But these were just brief moments because the boys and girls never stopped climbing! Just a few seconds later both winners and losers sprinted off to another wall or another boulder problem. To climb and attempt, ceaselessly, the same game with the identical passion. It was no chance therefore that the competition finished with the Family Rock, the race which unites parents and their children in an exciting vertical relay. This event has become a classic moment, a highly anticipated grand finale which embraces the spirit of the Rock Junior. And once again some real champions took part in the event, transmitting their passion to their children. While some children transmitted their passion and involved their mothers and fathers who made the most of the occasion and climbed for the very first time. This is what the Rock Junior is all about: a great celebration for all those who are captured in by this great game of climbing.

Photo by Nicholas Hobley /

Photo by Nicholas Hobley /

ROCK JUNIOR NATIONS 2009 Austria, Croatia, Ecuador, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, the Czech Republic, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, USA, Serbia, Switzerland, UkraineSPECIAL THANKS The Rock Master Association, the organisers of the event, would like to thank all children and thier parents for taking part in the 8th Rock Junior. Furthermore, the organisers would like to thank the City of Arco, the Autonomous Province of Trento, the Cassa Rurale Alto Garda, the Azienda Municipale Sviluppo Arco, InGarda and the 4 technical sponsors: Cassin-Camp, Salewa, La Sportiva and Sint Roc & Ecogrips. A special thanks goes to to Arco Climbing Sports Club which made the Rock Junior happen. And to the route setters Leonardo Di Marino and Donato Lella for their professionalism and passion. The Guardia di Finanza and Moena Police training Corps Mountain Rescue Service deserve a mention for their fundamental support.

ROCK JUNIOR TEAM The event is organised by the Rock Master Association, with the technical support of the Arco Climbing Association and the FASI. Maximum safety is guaranteed by Maximum safety is guaranteed by the Mountaineering School Prealpi Trentine, the Guardia di Finanza Mountain Rescue services, the Moena Police Alpine Training


Results Under 14 Cup:

  • Category A (96-97) male: 1) Bergant Martin (SLO); 2) Preskar Milan (SLO); 3) Santoni Alessandro (ITA); 4) Sifra Radovan (CZE); 5) Waldleben Moritz (SUI) female: 1) Chanourdie Julia (FRA); 2) Zampa Giada (ITA); 3) Ebner Andrea (ITA); 4) De Marco Annalisa (ITA); 5) Alton Giulia (ITA)

  • Category B (98-99) male: 1) Drolc Luka (SLO); 2) Raboutou Shawn (USA); 3) Hajna Miha (SLO); 4) Kovacs-Deak Daniel (HUN); 5) Prampolini Antonio (ITA) female: 1) Sterrer Franziska (AUT); 2) Pirc Brina (SLO); 3) Zarchdlov Katerina (CZE); 4) Kupcikova Lucie (CZE); 5) Scolaris Ilaria (ITA)

  • Category C (2000-01-02) male: 1) Sigmund Moritz (ITA); 2) Schenk Filip (ITA); 3) Ronyai Peter (HUN); 4) Pilotti Stefano (ITA); 5) Dorigatti Cristian (ITA) female: 1) Podolan Viktoria (AUT); 2) Raboutou Brooke (USA); 3) Chanourdie Lucie (FRA); 4) Kovarikova Nina (SVK); 5) Mantiger Anna (ITA)