Team Reality prepares for season opener

Tue, 02/12/2008 - 2:11pm
By: The Citizen

After five long months of twice-weekly practices, Team Reality is getting ready to start competing. Seven local climbers are putting the finishing touches on their climbing skills, making final preparations for upcoming rock climbing competitions. The season opener will be held at Adrenaline Climbing in Suwanee, Ga., on Feb. 23.

At the opener, Team Reality will begin a journey that will hopefully end in California. The journey will take them to local competitions in Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina, followed by a Regional Championship in May. Then they will move on to Divisionals in June, back in Charlotte, N.C. The USA SCS National Championship will be held in July in Sunnyvale, California.

Last year, Team Reality sent two climbers to Nationals. This year they are hoping to send all seven.

The USA Sport Climbing Series Youth Nationals is the largest roped rock climbing competition in the world, and this year’s team is anxious to get started.

This year’s team consists of four boys and three girls. Nicole Colvin is coaching Billy Porter, age 9, Sammy Heine and Hannah Montondo, both 11, Julia Roberts, 12, Andrew Nagy, 13, Ben Watson, 14, and Tyler Jones, 17. Some of the Team is returning from last year, including Hannah Montondo, who placed 20th out of 179 climbers in the Female Youth D category at last summer’s Nationals, which was held in Michigan. The competitions are age and gender based, giving all contestants a level playing field, so to speak.

The team is based out of Reality Climbing, an indoor rock climbing facility on the border of Tyrone and Peachtree City.

There are three different teams, ranging from beginner to competitive. The Dream Team is designed for beginning rock climbers, age 5 and up. Team Pursuit will take climbers to the next level and Team Reality is the traveling, competition team. Team Reality is in their third year, and they are competing against teams that have been established for six years or more. Having sent two climbers to Nationals last year was a real accomplishment for such a new organization.

The Team Reality climbers have been busy preparing for the competition. Preparations include two supervised team practices each week, starting in September. The climbers also climb one day each week on their own, reinforcing their skills. The team has also traveled to Alabama and Tennessee this past fall, to try their skills outdoors on Mother Nature herself.

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