Sport climbing debuts at Youth Olympics ahead of Tokyo 2020

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A dramatic late fall decided the first Youth Olympic sport climbing medals Tuesday, two years before the sport debuts at the Olympics in Tokyo.

Austrian Laura Lammer led after the first two of three events — speed climbing and bouldering — and looked destined for gold, in the final lead event, two holds from the top of the 15-meter wall. But Lammer fell, dropping her to the bronze medal while countrywoman Sandra Lettner took gold.

Slovenia’s Vita Lukan earned silver in an event without an American competitor.

Tuesday’s event resembled what sport climbing will look like at Tokyo 2020.

Men and women each compete in speed, bouldering and lead with results combined to determine medalists.

From Tokyo 2020: Speed climbing pits two climbers against each other, both climbing a fixed route on a 15-meter wall at a 95-degree angle. Winning times are generally between five and eight seconds. In bouldering, climbers scale a number of fixed routes on a four-meter wall in a specified time without safety ropes. In lead climbing, athletes attempt to climb as high as possible on a wall measuring over 15 meters in height within a fixed time with safety ropes.

The Youth Olympics, for athletes ages 14 to 18, debuted in Singapore in 2010, followed in 2014 in Nanjing, China. Youth Winter Games were in Innsbruck, Austria, in 2012 and Lillehammer, Norway, in 2016.

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