Jenft: pushing the envelope of achievement!

Friday, 18 august 2023

Paul Jenft and Victoire Andrier, two sport climbers supported respectively by Compagnie Européenne de Garanties et Cautions and the Caisse d’Epargne Rhône Alpes, took part in the World Climbing Championships in Bern, Switzerland. An opportunity to gain further experience one year ahead of Paris 2024.

Paul Jenft reaches two finals

As in all sporting disciplines, the world championships, one year ahead of the Olympic Games Paris 2024, offer the members of the French national climbing team an opportunity to measure themselves against the international competition and to draw up a working schedule for the coming months. The French team came away from these world championships with three medals – one gold and two silver – and a deep sense of satisfaction. 

In particular, Paul Jenft, supported by the Compagnie Européenne de Garanties et Cautions via the Performance Pact, had an outstanding fortnight. Admittedly, he didn’t qualify for Paris 2024 but that’s only a temporary setback. The fact that he wasn’t feeling on top form prevented him from performing at 100% of his capacity, a handicap that translates into a major disadvantage at this level of competition and especially in climbing. But the results he achieved despite this give an idea of how much progress he’ll be able to make before Paris 2024 next year. The world championships were a fantastic opportunity to gain experience in the leadup to the Olympics. Paul qualified for the final of the difficulty event, the 2nd time he’d competed in a senior World Championship of his young career. In the junior category, he was runner-up to the 2021 World Champion. He negotiated this particularly demanding final perfectly, finishing in 6th place without committing the slightest fault. 

It should be remembered that the difficulty event involves climbing as high as possible on a very challenging course. In the bouldering event, the aim is also to go as high as possible on the boulders chosen for the competition. To complete a boulder, you need to grab the last hold with both hands in a given time, with as few attempts as possible. Paul Jenft is a master of both events, having also qualified for the final of the combined bouldering and difficulty event, which will be one of the two sport climbing events at Paris 2024. This is where his diminished physical condition after two weeks of effort prevented him from defending his chances to the full. But the young climber from Chambéry in the French Alps battled on to the end, finishing 8th in the final. 

Good preparation for the OQT

At just 20 years of age, he can leave Berne in high spirits and satisfied with himself as he starts to prepare for the European Olympic Qualification Tournament (TQO) to be held in Laval (northwestern France) from October 27 to 29. 

Victoire Andrier, supported by the Caisse d’Epargne Rhône Alpes, who won the silver medal in the 5th stage of the Speed World Cup in Chamonix in July, enjoyed less success in Berne, where the conditions were understandably more demanding. The speed event consists in reaching the top of the route as quickly as possible. It will be one of the two climbing disciplines included in Paris 2024, along with the combined event. 

This young sport climber, a member of the Courchevel club in the French Alps, was eliminated in the qualifying round. She will, however, have an opportunity in a few weeks’ time at the European Olympic Qualification Tournament to be held in Italy for the speed event to earn her ticket to Paris 2024.