Having grown up in the US and traveled all around Europe, I’ve had the chance to meet lots of strong and motivating climbers. Many of these climbers are unknown to us here in the US, although their accomplishments would easily rank them high up in the American climbing scene. What’s more amazing is that most of them don’t have CATS or The Spot to train in…their accomplishments are products of pure motivation and psyche, often having to train in small boulder rooms with old, painful climbing holds, no climbing partners, route-setters, or coaches.
Felipe "Gomez" Camargo, of Brazil, has always been inspired by the professional climbing scene in Europe. Last year he had the chance to go to Europe for the summer to climb on rocks and compete in World Cups. He ended up climbing numerous 8c (5.14b) routes, onsighting 8a+ (5.13c), and 22nd place in the adult lead world cup, as well as finals in the European youth cup. He has bouldered numerous V11 and V12 boulder problems as well! All in all, Felipe is one of the most determined and psyched individuals I know. After traveling together last year and training together we ended up becoming very good friends. I have made a short interview with him over the Internet, check him out! â€¨
First off, introduce yourself mayyn!
â€¨â€¨Well, I’m Felipe Camargo, 17 years old and I’m Brazilian!!! I’ve been climbing "A muerte" since 2001! â€¨
We, here in America don’t really know anything about Brazil, other then the Carnaval and lots of hot girls. What’s Brazil like? How is the climbing, the gyms, the night life, etc.
â€¨â€¨â€¨Brazil is an amazing country to come for tourism, full of beauty and nature, and as everybody knows, lot of girls and parties (but I always heard that its better in the US...lots of blonde girls ahaha)!! Climbing in Brazil is still really small, but it’s growing on rock, but not really at the comps!! With time that’s going to change!!! 8c’s (5.14b's) are being sent just now.... so we still have a lot to progress and develop!
Describe an average day in the life of Felipe Camargo.
â€¨Since I finished school last year, life has been about climbing, only!!! !! So an average day - Wake up around 8 o clock, and go to the climbing gym for my first training session...from 9 till 12! Than back home, rest and chill until the afternoon! Around 6 I go back to the gym, and train until 10 o clock! After that I go back home.... during the week I usually just chill and rest.... and during weekends go out with friends and girls!
You’re widely known as Felipe the Papichulo or the Brazilian Cassanova over in Europe. How did you get that nickname? Will you live up to your reputation this year?
Well, since I’m not in a serious relationship, I’m always psyched to go around and meet new girls, and Europe is an amazing place for doing that! And also in Brazil people are always psyched to party, so I think it’s the Brazilian culture!!! I think this year I’m gonna try and be more mellow....try to get back my reputation!
Do you prefer boulders or routes? What are your goals for 2009, and in general?
â€¨â€¨â€¨I like both, but I’m always more psyched on routes!!! My goals for this year, is first off all progress on rock...try to do my first 8c+, and why not a 9a! And 8b onsight!! In comps, I just want to climb well and climb as hard as I can. If that works out, I think I can be in the top 5 at the World Youth, and do well at the word cups!!! This year no pressure...just climb as hard as I can and have fun with my hommies!
For every word I say, write the first thing that comes to mind.
France -Gorges Du Loup,â€¨the
US - blonde girlsâ€¨
World Cups - finalsâ€¨t
Training - always a muerte!â€¨
9a - coming soon!â€¨
Tufas - I hate..â€¨
Slabs - I hate even more!
Traveling - my passionâ€¨
Sponsors - BEAL!
Progression - I’m on itâ€¨
The best climber in the world - patxi usobiaga
Parties- always syked!
What was it like to travel in Europe last year? Tell us your top 3 most memorable moments.
â€¨â€¨Traveling in Europe was amazing.... a great experience and I grew up so much!!! Its hard to choose one specific moment.... there are so many...first off traveling around with Patxi Usobiaga, who has always been my "idol" and is now a really good friend! After that, climbing my first 8c, The Hulk in Rodellar! Than the comps (world cups, youth comps, etc) - so much frustration and then stepping it up in the end! Then, our epic climbing trip together... epics in Slovenia... crazy nights stranded under the giant cave in Santa Linya.... our psyched nights at Dani Andrada's small gym...Klu Bar in Slovenia.... Big Bar in Llerida... room 325 (ahahha).... so many good memories!!
What do you think is better for becoming a strong climber- the American, free-flow approach or the Euro mega-training mentality?
â€¨â€¨This really depends on what you have for training! If you are lucky to have huge gyms.... training less, your training will be as good as the Spanish crazy style in plafonds (small boulder-rooms with lots of holds, kind of like CATS.)!!! Or if u can climb everyday on lots of hard routes on rock, maybe you don’t have to train as hard as others...But in a big plan...the Europe mentality for sure!!!