Park City, Utah (July 27, 2015) – In conjunction with the 2015 Summer Outdoor Retailer trade show in Salt Lake City, the 3rd Annual Psicobloc Masters Series competition returns to the Utah Olympic Park August 5 to 7, 2015. Professional climbers from around the world will converge on Park City to compete in this high profile event, which many have called “the best climbing competition ever held.”
“Psicobloc,” coined by Miguel Riera, is a Spanish term meaning “crazy bouldering.” It is a climbing discipline first explored on the seaside cliffs of Mallorca, Spain, where climbers without ropes ascended cliffs over a body of water that is their only protection if they fall, and more commonly referred to as “deep-water soloing.” The Psicobloc Masters features a “duel” format where competitors race head-to-head on identical routes over the new Spence Eccles Olympic Freestyle Pool. The athlete who reaches the top of the wall first or climbs to the highest point advances to the next round.
The competition wall, designed by Walltopia, reaches 50 feet above the pool and overhangs roughly 25 feet. The climbers do not use ropes nor harnesses, creating a thrilling plunge into the one million gallon pool below, if they fall. The training pool received a complete redesign, reopening in June. The far end of the Olympic Freestyle Pool features a dedicated area for the climbing competition where the pool depth reaches 16 1Ž2 feet.
“The Psicobloc Master Series is the full package climbing event: climbing with no rope and plenty of opportunities for huge falls, makes for one spectacular show,” said Chris Sharma, professional climber and one of the founders of the Psicobloc Master Series. “It’s so amazing to realize this dream of mine for the third year in a row and to see all the new athletes competing this year.”
Last year, the event drew an estimated crowd of 5,500 spectators and over 50,000 viewers via live stream and rebroadcast. Canadian Sean McColl, one of the top international competition climbers, earned the first place title by narrowly beating Daniel Woods, a top climber from Colorado, who placed second in 2013. Sixteen year old Claire Buhrfeind from Texas, a relatively unknown climber, surprised the crowd by placing first after having to qualify to compete. She trumped all the invited female climbers including USA Climbing Sport Climbing Series Nationals Champion, Delaney Miller, and 2013 Psicobloc Master Series reigning champion, Sasha DiGiuiian.
Both 2014 Psicobloc Master Series winners have committed to compete in this year’s competition to defend their titles as well as second place climbers Woods and Miller, who are looking for their own first place finishes. Event organizers are also very energized by a number of new athletes who are signing on to compete. The athlete roster can be found online at Psicocomp.com.
The Park City event is the brainchild of Kevin Bradburn, President of Momentum Indoor Climbing; Mike Beck, Sports and Entertainment Attorney; filmmaker Mike Call, and Chris Sharma, described by National Public Radio as the world’s best rock climber.
“This competition comes at a perfect time as indoor climbing is booming and Psicobloc is a really fun way to take artificial climbing outdoors,” says Bradburn, who oversees three Momentum indoor climbing gym locations in Northern Utah.
“This competition embodies all of the greatest elements of climbing – as power, speed, endurance and a cool head are all required to be successful,” says Michael Beck, event co-founder. “It is really impressive to see how hard the athletes are trying when the consequence of failing is a 50 foot plunge.
Psicobloc Master Series Schedule of Events:
Wednesday, August 5 – Qualifiers (10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
Thursday, August 6 – Seeding Round (doors open at 6:00 p.m.; climbing starts at 7:00 p.m.)
Friday, August 7 – Finals (doors open at 6:00 p.m.; climbing starts at 7:30 p.m.)
Tickets for the Psicobloc Master Series are available online at Psicocomp.com and in person at the Utah Olympic Park (3419 Olympic Parkway, Park City UT 84098). VIP Packages are available for $75 per person and include general admission on Thursday, August 6 for the Seeding Round; and premium parking and poolside access on Friday, August 7 for Finals.
General admission tickets for Thursday’s Seeding Round are $15 for adult and $10 for youth ages six to 12. General admission tickets for Friday’s Finals are $25 for adults and $20 for youth ages six to 12. Kids ages five and under are free both nights. On Friday, there is a $5 parking fee for premium parking and free parking accessed via shuttle from the Olympic Parkway round-about.
Event sponsors will be on-hand in the Vendor Village in the Welcome Plaza at Utah Olympic Park on Thursday and Friday. Many outdoor retail organizations will showcase the latest gear and apparel, and some booths will feature autograph sessions with top climbers. The Vendor Village opens to the public at 5:00 p.m. and admission is free.
Climbing enthusiasts are encouraged to test their prowess during Qualifiers on August 5. Registration is open to the public (ages 16 and older) and the cost is $100 per person. Qualifiers will consist of one male route with a grade of 5.13+ and one female route with a grade of 5.12+. The top four fastest competitors from each gender will be awarded a spot during the Seeding Round. To register, go to: http://psicocomp.com/qualifier/
The Psicobloc climbing wall is open for public climbing through September 7. Anyone (age seven or older) can experience the thrill of deep-water soloing. Open daily from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Climbing wall tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for youth (ages seven to 12) and available at the Guest Services desk located in the Quinney Welcome Center at the Utah Olympic Park. Participants must be able to swim.
More information can be found at Psicocomp.com and these following social channels:
Images are available at psicocomp.com/blog
About Utah Olympic Park
Built for the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, Utah Olympic Park is located 28 miles east of Salt Lake City in Park City, Utah. During the 2002 Games, the 389-acre winter sports venue hosted bobsled, skeleton, luge, Nordic ski jumping, and Nordic combined events. It continues to serve a training center for Olympic and development level athletes and is a popular destination for tourist. Utah Olympic Park is home to six Nordic Ski Jumps (K10, K20, K40, K64, K90, K120 meter), 1,335-meter sliding track with five start areas, freestyle aerials winter training and competition hill, 750,000-gallon summer freestyle aerial training pool, Joe Quinney Winter Sports Center, Alf Engen Ski Museum and Eccles 2002 Winter Olympic Games Museum. For more information about the venue, please visit UtahOlympicLegacy.com or call 435-658-4200.
Melanie Welch, Utah Olympic Park Marketing Manager, firstname.lastname@example.org