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Stefano Ghisolfi Sends Sharma’s Biographie/Realization (5.15a)

As the world’s first confirmed 5.15, Biographie is the benchmark for sport climbers striving to break the 5.15 barrier. Only twelve climbers have sent the, steep, sustained, 120-foot route in Céüse, France and on June 21, Stefano Ghisolfi joined their ranks.

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Ghisolfi reaches the jug marking the end of the crux boulder problem. [Photo: Gianluca Bosetti]As the world’s first confirmed 5.15, Biographie is the benchmark for sport climbers striving to break the 5.15 barrier. Only twelve climbers have sent the, steep, sustained, 120-foot route in Céüse, France and on June 21, Stefano Ghisolfi joined their ranks.

“I climbed it in the most unexpected moment,” Ghisolfi told Rock and Ice. “I had a cut on my finger, and I didn’t know if I wanted to do another try. I decided to do the first section with the tape, and after the first part I ripped the tape with my teeth.” Ghisolfi finished off the route with bleeding fingertips.

Ghisolfi first saw Biographie, a.k.a. Realization, in a video of Chris Sharma making the first ascent in 2001. Since then, the route has seen ten repeats by climbers including Dave Graham, Ethan Pringle, Alex Megos, Adam Ondra, Jonathan Siegrist and, most recently, Sachi Amma.

“It is one of the most beautiful hard climbs I ever seen,” said Ghisolfi. “And it is not far from my home, just three and a half hours.”

Ghisolfi worked the route over three weekends, six days total. He spent four days on the lower 5.14c portion of the route, finding it more difficult than the upper boulder problem—a deadpoint to a sloping two-finger pocket—usually considered the crux.

Earlier this June, Ghisolfi established Hell’Avaro (5.14c/d)in Italy’s Tetto di Sarre. Despite being in prime sending shape, he plans to take a break from outdoor climbing to train for the first World Cup lead competition July 10 to 12 in Chamonix, France. He mentioned that he also has some potential projects near his home in Turin, Italy, but he is waiting for cooler temperatures in October to begin projecting them.

“One I think is harder than Biographie/Realization,” Ghisolfi said.


Chris Sharma on Biographie/Realization (5.15a):