To Top

Froning & Thorisdottir: How They Went Back to Back

Froning & Thorisdottir with their winning checks

Froning & Thorisdottir with their winning checks

History was made at the Home Depot Center back in July this year, when the first ever multiple winners of the CrossFit Games were crowned.

Heading into the 2012 showpiece, Annie Thorisdottir and Rich Froning were always going to be the ones to beat. Not only were both of them the reigning champions, but they were the best performed athletes during the Regionals.

In the end, no one could stop Rich and Annie as they once again held their $250,000 check’s in the middle of the Home Depot Center.

It’s been more than 2 months since the 2012 Games were held in Carson, California. Here’s a detailed look at how Froning & Thorisdottir created CrossFit history:


DAY 1: Camp Pendleton

Swim-Bike-Run – 12th

The big surprise of the 2012 CrossFit Games was Dave Castro’s announcement that there would be an extra day of competition two days before the Games were supposed to begin. The first event was to be a 700 meter swim, 11 kilometer bike road, followed by an 8 kilometer run through the hills of Camp Pendleton.

If there was an event that was going to trouble Froning, this would be it. While he is a beast at all CrossFit movements, there were a few question marks over his ability in a triathlon. In the end, he pushed through to cross the finish line in 12th position.

O-Course – 3rd

Luck was on Froning’s side in the obstacle course race. After a good performance in his opening heat, Rich looked down and out in his quarter final, before Neal Maddox fell over just meters before the finishing line, allowing Froning to cross the line ahead of him and advance to the semis. He went on to qualify for the final where he finished 3rd behind winner Spencer Hendel.

Matt Chan chasing down Froning in the Track Triplet

Matt Chan chasing down Froning in the Track Triplet

DAY 2: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 5th

Broad Jump – 16th

Day 2 started off with another surprise, with the Broad Jump, originally cancelled by organizers, to be brought back into the competition. It ended up being one of Froning’s worst performing events, finishing 16th overall. However, with only 50 points up for grabs it wouldn’t have too big an impact on the leaderboard.

Ball Toss – 3rd

A tough one for spectators to watch, but an easy one for Rich Froning. Only two competitors managed to throw a GHD ball further than the reigning champ as Froning scored his 2nd podium finish in the Games.

Track Triplet – 4th

The first real track event was always going to suit Froning, and he flew threw the three rounds of runs/snatches/bar muscle ups to finish 4th overall, missing out on another podium finish by less than a second, with Graham Holmberg, Chris Spealler and Daniel Tyminski all finishing ahead of him.

Medball-HSPU – 4th

Another consistent performance by Froning, showing no trouble with the 150 pound medicine ball, or the handstand pushups to claim another 4th place finish. Training partner Dan Bailey finished 2nd while Albert-Domininc Larouche finished with the best time.

DAY 3: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 1st

Sprint – 18th

The 50 and 100-yard sprints ended up being Froning’s worst event at the CrossFit Games, finishing 18th overall. But once again, with only 50 points on offer, he still managed to hold onto the number one spot.

Rope–Sled – 5th

With plenty of big guys like Matt Chan, Jason Khalipa and Chad Mackay, you would have thought Froning would struggle for a top ten finish in this workout. But that wasn’t to be. Froning used brute strength to push the 90 pound sled over the finish line with the 5th best time. Chan and Khalipa were the stand out performers in this event.

Clean Ladder – 5th

Rich Froning has a great clean, but it wasn’t good enough to beat Neal Maddox is this event. Maddox’s 365 pound clean was 20 pounds better than Froning’s, with the reigning champ finishing back in 5th place.

Chipper – 1st

It was the final workout on Day 3 when Rich Froning won his first event of the Games. His time in the chipper event was more than 16 seconds better than Jason Khalipa, who finished 2nd, with Matt Chan in 3rd. It gave him an 88-point lead heading into the final day of competition.

Froning in the final workout Fran

Froning in the final workout Fran

DAY 4: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 1st

Double Banger – 9th

Not his best performance of the Games, but definitely not his worst. Froning’s 9th place finish in the Double Banger was good enough to maintain a healthy lead over his rivals heading into the final few workouts. Veteran Kyle Kasperbauer won the event.

Elizabeth – 1st

Froning smashed this workout, finishing almost 10 seconds ahead of Matt Chan in 2nd place, setting up an almost invincible lead heading into the final two workouts.

Isabel – 1st

Another event win by Froning and the title was all but his. With a lead of over 100 points, all he had to do was complete the final workout to claim victory yet again at the CrossFit Games.

Fran – 5th

Scott Panchik might have won the final workout, but it will always be remembered as the moment Rich Froning became the first man to ever win back-to-back CrossFit Games titles.

In the end Froning won by 114 points to Matt Chan, with Kyle Kasperbauer rounding out the podium in 3rd place.

With such a dominant performance, the question being asked is, who can beat him in 2013?


DAY 1: Camp Pendleton

Swim-Bike-Run – 14th

Hailing out of Iceland, it’s fair to say Annie Thorisdottir doesn’t do too much ocean swimming in her spare time. Going into the treacherous triathlon at Camp Pendleton, many were tipping Annie to struggle, however she impressed with a 14th position overall.

O-Course – 3rd

Just like Rich Froning, Thorisdottir recovered after a low finish in the opening event to claim 3rd spot in the obstacle course. After winning her first few races, Thorisdottir wasn’t good enough to beat Talayna Fortunato and Kristan Clever in the final.

Thorisdottir during the Clean Ladder

Thorisdottir during the Clean Ladder

DAY 2: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 6th

Broad Jump – 33rd

By far Annie Thorisdottir’s worst performance at the CrossFit Games. The reigning champ struggled in the broad jump, scoring just 74 inches to finish 33rd overall, seeing her slip back further down the leaderboard.

Ball Toss – 4th

While it only had a maximum of 50 points up for grabs, the Ball Toss was an important event for Thorisdottir to climb up the leadrboard. She ended up finishing 4th overall, with 41 year old Cherly Brost taking 1st place.

Track Triplet – 12th

Many expected Thorisdottir to do better in this event. The Icelandic warrior finished 12th overall, nearly a minute and a half behind winner Julie Foucher, who had opened up a lead of 60 points on top of the leadrboard.

Medball-HSPU – 1st

Just when it was needed most, Thorisdottir claimed her first event victory at the 2012 CrossFit Games. She smashed through the medball lifts, and carry’s, to finish 14 seconds ahead of her nearest rival, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet. Leader Julie Foucher failed to finish the workout within the cut-off time to see her lead vanish.

DAY 3: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 3rd

Sprint – 15th

With just 50 points up for grabs in this workout, Annie’s 15th place finish didn’t affect her position on the leaderboard too much, especially with leaders Julie Foucher and Talayna Fortunato also struggling.

Rope–Sled – 2nd

This event was perfect for Annie Thorisdottir, and the reigning champ put in a great performance, finishing 2nd overall. Rebecca Voigt was the standout performer, winning by more than 20 seconds. Julie Foucher finished 9th and had now lost her lead in the overall standings.

Clean Ladder – 3rd

Lindsey Valenzuela and Elisabeth Akinwale were the standout performers in this event, being the only two females to complete the entire ladder. Next best was Thorisdottir who cleaned 220 pounds to finish 3rd overall and claim top spot on the leaderboard for the first time all Games.

Chipper – 3rd

Another great performance by Thorisdottir as she claimed her 5th podium finish at the Games. Her time of 8:15 wasn’t good enough to beat Julie Foucher, but it was enough to see her claim the overnight lead.

Annie Thorisdottir during the Rope Climb

Annie Thorisdottir during the Rope Climb

DAY 4: Home Depot Center: Overall Position – 1st

Double Banger – 5th

A solid effort by Annie in an event that was suited to her. She showed great form in the hammer drives to finish 5th overall, with Elisabeth Akinwale claiming victory.

Elizabeth – 6th

While she held a handy lead heading into the third final workout, Thorisdottir still needed a good performance in the ‘girls’ event to claim back-to-back CrossFit Games titles. Her 6th place finish was better than Julie Foucher and Talayna Fortunato, leaving her perfectly placed heading into the final two events.

Isabel – 1st

Victory in the second last workout all but secured back-to-back titles for Annie Thorisdottir. Just like Rich Froning in the men’s division, Annie just had to finish the final ‘Fran’ workout to claim her second CrossFit Games crown.

Fran – 6th

Annie Thorisdottir’s 6th place finish in the final workout was more than enough to see her become the first athlete in history to claim back to back CrossFit Games titles, with Julie Foucher finishing 85 points behind in 2nd place. Talayna Fortunato beat Kristan Clever by nine points to claim 3rd position overall.

While the gap might be closing between her and the rest of the competitors, Annie Thoridottir is still the words fittest woman, and looks likely to hold onto that title for years to come.


This article was featured in this months edition of Sweat Rx Magazine. You can check out the rest of the magazine by clicking here.


The Rx Review is an independent fitness website, reporting on the Sport of Fitness, functional fitness news, The CrossFit Games, health and diet related information, and also provides reviews on sports performance products.