- 5 June 1985
- Innsbruck (Austria)
- Professional climber
The journey of a competitor
«No matter what their discipline is, all athletes pretty much share the same feelings. In the end they have the same type of relationship with their brand, their equipment, their team. The only difference is the level and the amount of media recognition. As a Dutch climber I started climbing in the gym, but I quickly realized there were other opportunities. Since 2005, I have lived in the Austrian Alps. In one word, I live a dream. I am a professional competition climber but I also climb outdoors a lot. I find the most pleasure outdoors, in nature.»
A rapid progression from climbing gyms to big walls
«My life as a climber can be summed up as primarily competition climbing in the beginning, and then bouldering, and now mostly climbing on big sport routes and big walls.
Just after I started climbing, it became obvious to me that I should become a professional climber. As soon as I finished high school I packed my bags and left. I left my flat homeland to climb as much as possible.
I saw many different places around the world, some magnificent and others polluted. I found rock everywhere. Without a doubt, my favorite spot to recharge and relax is Reunion Island. The island is simply paradise.»
Winner of the World Cup (lead climbing) 2008.
«I spent a few years trying to achieve this goal.
I almost succeeded, but I fell numerous times. I was really relieved when I finally won.»