In a matter of days, Adam Ondra has cranked through a handful of Italy’s hardest sport climbs. Today, he made the first
repeat of Stefano Ghisolfi’s Lapsus (9b/5.15b) in Andonno and polished off Perfect Man 2.0 (9a/5.14d) on his second go in Castelbianco. On Tuesday, Ondra made the first ascent of Queen Line,
Arco’s first 9b/5.15b, and also made a quick repeat of Ghisolfi’s Ultimatum (9a+/5.15a) later that day as “icing on the cake.”
“Lapsus 9b [5.15b] in Andonno gets its second ascent today after [Stefano Ghisolfi],” Ondra reported on Instagram. “Amazing conditions and feeling pretty strong today.”
Ghisolfiestablished Lapsus, a linkup between Noia (8c+/5.14c) and Anaconda (8c/5.14b), in November 2015 and suggested 5.15b
for the grade—a first for the country. “I propose a new grade for me and for Italy,” Ghisolfi wrote after his ascent. He also challenged other
climbers to come try it to confirm the grade: “Maybe Italian history has been made!!”
Ondra reported the climb as 9b, which suggests that Lapsus will go down in history as Italy’s first of the grade.
Two days prior, Ondra added a 9b of his own to Italy’s repertoire with Queen Line. “A new king line is born. Well, it is not king line, it is
Queen Line,” Ondra reported on Instagram. “Incredible and super intense pitch in
Arco [Garda Trentino] bolted by Mauro Mabboni.”
Queen Line is one of three routes at the Laghel crag—a steep, limestone wall that was originally bolted for dry-tooling, but has been recently
taken over by sport climbers. Queen Line begins on the center route and finishes on the right-hand line. The direct finish, the “King Line,”
and the lefthand line are still unclimbed. Ghisolfi is currently working the
left line, which will likely be around 5.15a.
As for Queen Line, Ondra posted: “For the grade, I am pretty sure that it is rather on the upper end of the 9b [5.15b] grade. Small holds, big
moves, hard drop knees. My style.” Queen Line might now be Italy’s newest, hardest sport climb.
Also on Tuesday, the “icing on the cake,” as Ondra wrote, was his quick repeat of Ghisolfi’s Ultimatum (9a+/5.15a) later in the day at Massone.
Ondra’s is the third-known ascent of the route since Ghisolfi established the climb in December 2016.
Stay tuned for more Italian action from Ondra.
[UPDATE: Ondra continues to crush! On Friday, April 21, after this article was published, he made the first ascent of Naturalmente (9a+/5.15a) [watch video here] and
the first ascent of La Terza Eta (9a/5.14d), on his fourth attempt, in Camaiore.]
Watch Adam Ondra send Queen Line (9b/5.15b) in Arco, Italy: