Q&A with Singapore IFSC Jury President – Stanley Yeo

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IFSC or the International Federation of Sport Climbing is the governing body for international climbing competitions. IFSC is the equivalent of FIFA to football. It establishes the rules, policies, and standards for all official climbing competitions which consist of lead climbing, speed climbing, and bouldering.

I had known Stanley Yeo for years through climbing and was aware that he is involved in IFSC. However, I don’t really know much other than the fact that he travels to IFSC climbing competitions around the world and gets to rub shoulders with some of the world’s best climbers.

So if you are wondering how does one get to be a part of IFSC, what are the roles available, and what are the requirements to even be considered? Stanley will shed some light on these questions.

Q1 – What is your role in IFSC?

I am a Jury President in IFSC. My role to manage the organizing and running of appointed IFSC events. There are four appointed IFSC Officials in an IFSC event.

The Technical Delegate (TD) leads the preparation work months before the event ensuring that the competition facilities and services provided by the Event Organiser are in accordance with IFSC Regulations.

The Jury President (JP) manages the organizing and running of the competition. He/she works with the Technical Delegate and Event Organiser in the planning of the competition and is responsible for all things, people, and activities within the Field of Play during the competition.

The IFSC Judge leads the national judges in the judging of each competitor during the competition.

The Chief Routesetter is responsible for all matters of route setting and route maintenance, including the design of each route or boulder.

Q2 – How long had you been an IFSC official?

14 years since 2005.

Q3 – How did you become an IFSC Official?

In 2005, I attended the International Judge course in Imst, Austria. I passed the end-of-course examination, completed my 2 judge internships, and received my license.

The current pathway to becoming an IFSC Judge begins at the continental level. Trainees who passed the Continental Course and internships will start as a Continental Judge.

Q4 – What was your first event?

The 2007 Asian Indoor Games in Macau.

Q5 – Is there an international ranking system for climbing (like that of FIFA world ranking)?

Yes, there is. The IFSC World Ranking is calculated using the sum of all IFSC World Cups and World Championships results of the last 12 months. The starting order of the Bouldering World Cups is determined by the ascending order of the IFSC World Ranking.

Q6 – How does the combined discipline scoring system work?

Competitors receive points equal to their rank in the speed, bouldering, and lead stage. If there is a tie at any stage, the points shall be the average ranking of the tied competitors.

For E.g. where there are 4 ties at 8th place in the Bouldering stage, the points awarded to each competitor will be equal to (8 + 9 + 10 + 11 ) / 4 = 9.5

The Qualification or Final Round Ranking Points is a multiplication of the points and finally, ranked in ascending order (the lower the better).

This Adam Ondra video gives a very detailed explanation of the scoring format for combined discipline for the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympic.

Q7 – How will the 20 men and women qualify for Tokyo 2020?

There are four events where competitors can qualify for Tokyo 2020:
2019 Combined World Championship – 7 places
Olympic Qualifying Event – 6 places
2020 Combined Continental Championship – 5 places (1 per continent)
Host country – 1 place
Tripartite Commission invitation – 1 place
Each National Olympic Council can obtain a maximum of 2 spots each for men and women.

Q8 – Name some of the famous competition climbers that you have come across.

I met the 4-time World Cup champion and World Champion Robyn Erbesfield-Raboutou. She coaches USA climbers like Megan Mascarenas, Margo Hayes, and her daughter, Brooke Raboutou.
I worked with Francois Legrand who was Chief Routesetter for the 2016 World University Championships. Francis is a 5-time World Cup Champion and 3-time World Champion.

Ramón Julián Puigblanqué (middle)
Winner of 2 world championships 2007 and 2011

Q9 – Which climber would you like to meet in person?

Jerry Moffatt. Winner of the first Climbing World Cup.

Q10 – What events are you looking forward to this year? Why?

My first appointment outside of Asia was the 2015 Youth World Championships in Arco, Italy. So I am looking forward to returning to the same venue for this year’s Youth World Championships in Arco Italy in August.

Arco Italy

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