In the lead up to the 2014 CrossFit Games Open, the Australian equipment supplier AlphaFit have signed their seventh athlete, Samantha Drescher. Drescher (21) joins the impressive AlphaFit team in 2014 which includes Brandon Swan, Amy Dracup, Brendan Clarke, Khan Porter, Andrea Miller and Rory Boyden .
Drescher discovered functional fitness almost two years ago while on a scholarship for basketball playing for the Gold Coast Rollers. She continued to train with Dale Finlayson at CrossFit Alive during her time on the Gold Coast where she got a taste of the competitive side of CrossFit, and decided to enter the Open in 2013. Drescher qualified to the Australian Regional and placed 24th. After moving back to her hometown Darwin, Drescher kept training and coaching at CrossFit Darwin. This year, Drescher is aiming for a top ten finish at the 2014 Australia Regional.
Here’s a video of Drescher back squatting 90kgs for 20 reps straight during the Schwartz Challenge:
The details of the other six AlphaFit Sponsored athletes are as follows:
Swan (22) came out of nowhere in 2012 making the podium after an impressive performance during the Australia Regional weekend. In 2011 Swan placed 31st at the Regional and he showed everyone 2012 was no fluke by qualifying for the CrossFIt Games again in 2013. Unfortunately, Swan suffered a knee injury during the rope climb/thrusters event at the Games that year and had to withdraw from the rest of the competition. All eyes will be on Swan again this year as the competition continues to get tougher. Will Swan be able to qualify three years in a row with the likes of Ben Garard, Matt Healey, Chad Mackay, Rob Forte and several other athletes breathing down his neck?
Swan owns his own CrossFit Affiliate in Ipswich, CrossFit Western Front.
2013 was an eventful year for Dracup (32). She missed out on an individual spot to the CrossFit Games (placing 4th at the 2013 Australia Regional), but still competed in Carson, California as part of the Schwartz CrossFit Melbourne team. In 2011 Dracup placed 11th as an individual at the Games, still the highest placing by an Australian female at the Games so far. In 2013 Dracup left her long-time coach and gym, Schwartz CrossFit Melbourne, to open up her own affiliate with her husband Bjorn Walker. They opened CrossFit Deux in South Melbourne. Dracup started following Rob Forte’s program, and together with Matt Swift the three athletes are working together to prepare them for the 2014 season.
Porter (24) was a rookie on the Australia Regional in 2013, and surprised many by placing top ten in his first year on the big stage. Porter watched from the stands in 2012, and set himself a goal to qualify the following year. In 2014, Porter’s training has been very impressive (getting coached by Drew Griffith from CoachRx and trained regularly with 4th place finisher in 2013 Matt Healey), and has also fared well at local competitions.
Porter owns CrossFit Play in Drummoyne, Sydney, enjoys a surf when his schedule allows it and posts some very entertaining Instagram posts. You can follow him at iamkhanporter.
Clarke (21) captured the Australian CrossFit community during the 2011 CrossFit Open where he posted weekly videos of his workouts at home with his younger brother filming. After qualifying for the Australia Regional that year he was awarded the Spirit of the Game for his impressive performance. Clarke continued his good form in 2012 placing 5th at the 2012 Regionals but unfortunately in 2013 he suffered a back injury during the 100s workout and was unable to compete at 100% for the rest of the weekend. Continuing his training programme with long-time coach Rob Downton from RAW Strength and Conditioning, Clarke is looking stronger than ever and is hungry to prove himself again in 2014.
Miller (31) has had an impressive athletic career, most notably winning bronze at the 2010 Commonwealth Games in the 100m hurdles. With such an impressive background it was no surprise that Miller fell in love with functional fitness, and set her ambitions to compete at the Australia CrossFit Regional. Unfortunately, in the 2013 Regional, Miller suffered from extreme exhaustion but managed to continue competing for the rest of the weekend. After finishing in 17th place, Miller was awarded the Spirit of the Games Award.
In 2014, Miller is representing New Zealand in Weightlifting at the Commonwealth Games and is aiming to improve on her 2013 performance at the Australia Regional. Miller trains at CrossFit Urban Energy.
Rory “the Rooster” Boyden is a long time athlete at CrossFit Active, one of the powerhouses in the Australian CrossFit community and the home of Chad Mackay. Boyden (23) has had the privilege of training with Mackay over the past year, and showcased his ability at the 2013 Australia Regional by placing 9th. Boyden came into the Regional with a wrist injury and was only able to overhead squat 135lb in the second event. However, he went on to win the burpee muscle-up event though, and took 2nd in the 100s workout.
2014 should be an exciting year for Boyden, with pans to open up his own affiliate and improve on his 2013 result from the Australia Regional.