With the 2015 CrossFit Regional events kicking off this week, The Rx Review is taking a look at some of the big names who are going team in 2015 as well as some of the powerhouse teams to look out for this year.
More than 150 athletes worldwide declined individual invitations to their regional event and have opted to compete as part of a team instead. The most anticipated move of course comes from the ‘Fittest Man on Earth’ since 2011, Rich Froning Jr. After claiming his fourth CrossFit Games victory in 2014, Froning announced that he would be shifting his focus to team competition in 2015.
Froning is not the only big name making a change this year. Many people were surprised by Jason Khalipa’s announcement that he was also going team for 2015. Some expected that the seven time individual CrossFit Games competitor would see Froning’s departure as a chance to take the top spot on the podium, but that wasn’t the case.
Khalipa finished the 2015 Open in first place in Northern California and fourth in the world, contributing to his team -NorCal CrossFit’s – dominant performance in the Open. An impressive five NorCal CrossFit team members qualified for the California Regional as individuals (Khalipa, Molly Vollmer, Jen Zambruno, Nick Zambruno and Miranda Oldroyd). Having won the Open with a 36 point lead over the second placed team, NorCal CrossFit will be hard to beat.
Games veteran, James Hobart qualified for the Central Regional after finishing fifth in Central East, however, he will be joining Froning on the floor as part of the CrossFit Mayhem Freedom team. Finishing the Open in fourth place worldwide, you can expect to see Mayhem on the Central podium and Froning and Hobart returning to the Games as part of the team.
2014 Games’ competitors Albert-Dominic Larouche and Tommy Hackenbruck have also turned down individual tickets in favour of the team competition. Finishing in equal first in his region and 24th place worldwide, Larouche was part of Canada East’s CrossFit Adm team this year during the Open. Hackenbruck will join 2014 female Games’ competitor, Mandi Janowitz, and two other individual qualifiers (Brennan Ford and Jacob Hutton) on the roster for the Ute CrossFit team.
Another 2014 Games’ competitor who qualified as an individual but will make the change to team this year is Rachel Martinez. Martinez finished 28th at the Games last year as an individual but will be vying to get back there as part of the CrossFit New England team this year.
Both first and second place female finishers from the Africa Region, Jamie Greene and Tamarind Robinson have selected to go team at the Meridian Regional. They will join Elliot Simmonds and Sabine Whitfield, who finished 10th place in the male and female divisions respectively, as part of the CrossFit Yas team.
The number of individual qualifiers on a team is certainly not the only way to pick a winning team. Coming out of the Open, the second placed team worldwide, FITERNITY of Superhero CrossFit has just one regional qualifier, Tiffany Szemplinski. The team does not lack for impressive results, however, with five members finishing the Open ranked 52nd or higher in their region.
The following teams will head into the Regional events with four or more individual qualifiers on their roster (numbers indicate their regional result in the 2015 Open):
NorCal CrossFit (NorCal CrossFit) – Jason Khalipa 1, Molly Vollmer 8, Jen Zambruno 11, Nick Zambruno 22 and Miranda Oldroyd 22
CrossFit Marysville (North West) – Noah Pester 6, Ryan Swobody 9, Kyle Flanders 10, Ashleigh Moe 11 and Melissa Dixon 16
CrossFit 808 (Northern California) – Elyse Umeda 7, Rich Korth 11, Kyla Evers 18 and Paige Castillo 25
CrossFit New England (North East) – Conor Nugent 12, Cheryl Nasso 12, Rachel Martinez 19 and Tracey O’Donnell 21
Pro1 Montreal(Canada East) – Mirakim Couvrette 5, Dominic Trepanier 9, Stephanie Roy 11 and Fanny Girard 12
CrossFit Fabriken (Europe) – Emelie Smiding 13, David Carlsson 22, Karin Dike 28 and Maria Akerlund 29
CrossFit Yas (Africa) – Jamie Greene 1, Tamarind Robinson 2, Elliot Simmonds 10 and Sabine Whitfield 10
Ute CrossFit (South West) – Brennan Ford 4, Mandi Janowitz 8, Jacob Hutton 10 and Tommy Hackenbruck 11
The CENTAURS (Canada West) – Delaina Snider 6, Kurt Baker 7, Nate Beveridge 8 and Robbie Perovich 10