Molly Thompson Smith

Molly Thompson Smith
Edinburgh EYC 2013

Thursday, 9 October 2014

Dealing with disappointment

Hannah gets her case! 
This year, the World Youth Championships was held in Nouméa, New Caledonia. For those of you who don't know where Nouméa is (I had no clue!), its a couple hours to the right of Australia... so literally as far as you can get away from the UK. I had high hopes for New Caledonia; after a strong, consistent start to junior season I was feeling confident. I don't really know how to go about writing this blog... I have so many thoughts and feelings that are difficult to get down and part of me still doesn't really know what happened or what to think of it.

My preparation for the comp wasn't ideal... about a month before we were supposed to leave my shoulder started hurting. So I saw a physio and was told to rest for a while and take it easy if I wanted to compete in Nouméa. This wasn't what I wanted to hear - I needed to be training hard and it was so hard not climbing for a bit. But nevertheless I followed the physio's orders and thankfully my shoulder felt much better quickly. I continued training and suddenly the day before we were to leave had arrived. The team came to the Westway for one last session and then it was off to bed ready for a verryyyy long journey the next day. 

We felt the need to be touristy ;)
We were so lucky to make it to Nouméa as planned... our first flight from London to Helsinki had been delayed by an hour and a bit and we were expected to land 15 minutes after our flight for Japan left. Luckily they held the plane for us as we ran through Helsinki airport. After 2 long flights and a stopover in Japan we arrived in Nouméa. Unfortunately our luggage had not arrived with us and was still in Helsinki. With only the clothes we had worn for the previous 32 hours we spent the next to days waiting for our luggage to arrive... and when it did it was honestly the best moment of the entire trip! We had a few days of chilling before the comp which included a few runs with Hannah, a boulder session on the warm up wall and snorkelling and swimming with turtles. 

The start of the comp arrived with the opening ceremony on the Friday night and I was given the honour of holding the flag. Saturday morning came and qualification began. My first route had a sketchy but alright start followed by a juggy roof section and a difficult, pumpy headwall. I don't think my warm up was too good for this route and I came off just coming onto the headwall. It wasn't a bad climb but it was by no means a good climb either. But i was in the top 26 and thats all that
Hannah and I had a lot of fun in the apartment!
mattered really. This WYCH didn't follow the normal format so both qualification routes were held on one day. I didn't really like this, especially as I was out 4th last so climbing around 9pm... the time I had had to have a mini nap every day before that. My warm up was much better for this route and I was feeling motivated to climb better than I had on my first route. I knew I could top this route but it just didn't happen for me. I climbed really smoothly up until coming over onto the headwall. Suddenly the holds got much smaller, which was okay as I felt okay. I made the big, awkward move off the volume boxes and onto the headwall and then the move after... but messed up the clip not once, not twice... but 3 times. And as you can imagine, after trying to clip a clip by your waist off of two slopers three times I got pumped. I managed to get the clip in but the next move was a big step up and lock and I just didn't quite get the hold, slow mo falling off backwards. Even though I was frustrated, I had done enough to make the semi finals in 16th place. 

The wall!
Semis were the evening after and I chilled during the day, doing some school work and hanging with the girls. This competition meant so so much to me. I had set myself a pretty hard goal last year, to make all the World Youth Championships finals in my junior career. I had made 3 so was half way there... and I was desperate to make the 4th one. The semi final route looked really hard. The start was completely my anti-style; very very techy and sketchy on button sized holds followed by a complicated and difficult to read volume bit in the beginning of the roof and then a wandering mini jugs trail that eventually made its way to the top. I was nervous... all I kept telling myself was 'don't drop it at the second clip'. I carefully made my way through the sketchy bit, taking my time in the difficult sections. I made it to the volume section at the beginning of the roof and must've spent at least a minute there just trying to work out how to get around these boxes... I honestly don't know what I was doing taking that long to get on with it, looking back. But I eventually just sorted myself out and made it through the boxes. By the time I had got past them I was pretty pumped and only managed a few more moves after that.

Qualifier 1
So Nouméa was a disaster for me... and I hope I don't offend anyone when I talk about this as I'm sure some people would be happy with 18th but I'm really hard on myself and always want to push for top results... so I was disappointed. I'm working on dealing with disappointment and trying to turn bad performances into something constructive. As you might have seen I've started tweeting a quote of the day which helps me look forward and think positively and not be dragged down and back by disappointment and difficulties. It was hard for me watching the finals as I wanted to be in it so badly. I know everyone says this but I genuinely looked at the route and thought I could climb really well on it and that it suited me... which was pretty much the only route I thought this for in the comp! But it was great to see William representing in the Male A finals and unfortunately it didn't go as we had all hoped for him but he still climbed so well and finished in a great position.

This was quite a long blog so well done and thanks for reading if you got this far! ;) I just want to say a massive thanks to my sponsors as without their support I wouldn't be able to do what I am doing now!

Lyon (La Sportiva, Petzl, Beal)
Michael and Lauren Clancy
Sports Aid
Sport England
Westway Development Trust

My Grandparents :)