Strat’s a-coming!

The US championship race at the stratosphere is a few short days away. The line-up for the elite wave has been released, and with many of the usual suspects for the men’s race not able to attend this year, that half of the race is wide open, with Alexander Workman, Jeffrey Dinkin, Thomas Scott, and John “Oz” Osborne statistically likely to finish in a dead heat, and up-and-coming athletes such as Joshua Duncan and Jason Larson likely to be nipping at their heels.

On the Women’s side, Erika Aklufi is heavy favorite to repeat as national champion, and possibly take fastest overall american title away from the male competitors.  It is difficult to guess what order the spots beneath that might be; with many of the top 10 US women, such as Madeleine Fontillas Ronk, Sherri Breese, Lisa Ziegel, Karen Geninatti, and Sarah Johnson  in attendance, the competition for podium spots is bound to be fierce indeed!

There is a strong German contingent as well, including Görge Heimann and Ralf Hascher. Görge narrowly missed winning the Willis Tower Climb in november, and Ralf put in a very strong performance at the Empire State Building Run-Up, so both will be vying for top times and world cup points, although not eligible for the US championship.

With the amazing venue, unique and challenging climb, prize money, and discounted stay for elite climbers, the US championship at the stratosphere is bound to be a top attraction for stairclimbing elites for years to come!