If 20.1 is any indication of the remaining four weeks, well then we’re in for a doozy this year in the Open. A simple couplet of ground-to-overhead and bar-facing burpees left the CrossFit masses in a crumpled heap after week 1. The sting we’re used to feeling in week 5 of the Open, showed up right away, and now all eyes turn to 20.2.
This week we’ve got a pair of announcements and matchups on opposite sides of the globe, with two Sanctionals playing host to announcements in the great white north of Canada, and the sunny shores of Australia. In week 1, our match-up predictions didn’t fare so well, as the burpee-heavy workout set the stage for some upsets, as well a golden sombrero for editor-in-chief Justin LoFranco. Below is how to watch as well as our expert picks, and results from week 1.
Brandon Domingue: 2-2
Tommy Marquez: 1-3
Justin LoFranco: 0-4
Matt Mcleod vs. Khan Porter Presented by the Australian CrossFit Championship
- Location: CrossFit Newcastle – Georgetown, Newcastle NSW, Australia
- Start time: Livestream will start at 4:50 PM PST, which is 10:50 AM local time on October 18.
- How to watch: The livestream will be hosted on the Australian CrossFit Championship Facebook page, and Games page.
- Background: A local matchup of Australian men pits an established veteran versus a newcomer to the CrossFit Games big stage. Khan Porter is a 4-time individual Games athlete, and member of Project X’s 2019 Games team. Matt Mcleod was the rookie of the year on the men’s side, finishing 7th overall – winning two events in the process – at the 2019 Games in his third full season competing.
Justin LoFranco: Matt McLeod
With a 7th place finish in his rookie appearance at the CrossFit Games, Matt McLeod is coming off a solid first-year performance. Looking at last year’s Open, McLeod lost to Khan Porter in two of five workouts, one of which was separated by only three seconds. I think Porter’s year off from individual competition gives McLeod an additional edge. My one caveat is that in Open workouts without a barbell Porter fares extremely well against McLeod and could be the deciding factor.
Brandon Domingue: Matt McLeod
20.1 followed a pretty standard trend of low-skill and high-engine work, if 20.2 follows suit expect something with gymnastics being a factor. Both are pretty level in this regard but I’m anticipating something “Fran”-like this week, so I’m going off the better Fran time. Also doesn’t hurt that McLeod is trending upward in a big way right now. That said, expect Porter to put on a show with the spotlight shining, he’s a clutch competitor that’s definitely one of the best personalities in the sport as well.
Tommy Marquez: Matt McLeod
Something tells me we’re going to see the pull-up bar or rig come into play this week, after having a relatively simple and straightforward 20.1. That means pull-ups, toes-to-bar, or a muscle-up variation that could dial the gymnastics up a bit, and that’s where I’m hanging my hat this week. In the three Open workouts last year featuring the rig Mcleod had an average finish of 3.33 amongst the men of Australia, while Porter had an average finish of 23. Porter has stepped up in big moments before, but I think McLeod might come in with a chip on his shoulder to prove his top-10 finish at the Games was a sign of things to come in 2020.
Carolyne Prevost vs. Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault presented by the CrossFit Atlas Games
- Location: CrossFit St. Jean – Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec, Canada
- Start Time: Livestream coverage will start at 4:45 PM PST, which is 7:45 PM local time.
- How to watch: You can watch live on Morning Chalk Up’s YouTube, at rds.ca as well as the Games website.
- Background: A matchup of the two top Canadian women from the 2019 Games, both Carolyne Prevost and Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault earned their spot at the Games through the Open last year. Reason-Thibault was the Canadian national champion, and Prevost – who finished 2nd in Canada – earned one of the top 20 worldwide spots. Reason-Thibault is a 5-time individual competitor at the Games, while Prevost finished 13th in her rookie campaign in Madison in 2019.
JL: Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault
This is a very close match-up and almost too hard to predict without knowing the workout. On paper, these two athletes are very similar. Both are top performers in the 2019 Open and top 20 athletes at last year’s Games. Given that, I’m going with Reason-Thibault based exclusively on experience on the competition floor. With the lights on both athletes and Reason-Thibault having more of a home-court advantage, I’m betting the 5x Games athlete edges out the rookie.
BD: Carolyne Prevost
This is one of my favorite match-ups yet because it features two absolutely freakish athletes from a multi-sport sense (Reason-Thibault with a boxing background, Prevost an active pro hockey player). Both athletes can dig deep. Both athletes are quite well rounded. Reason-Thibault has had a longer run of success, but I feel like there was a couple of years where Prevost was just knocking on the door waiting to break out. I’m gonna go with my gut and pick Prevost just because I think the pressure is off now that she’s joined the Games ranks and more than impressed with a solid 13th in her first trip to her collegiate home of Madison.
TM: Carolyne Prevost
I agree with Brandon here in the fact that this is an exciting matchup, and would be so in a variety of different sports given both athletes prowess outside of CrossFit. Event though Reason-Thibault got the better of Prevost in the Open last year, I think the leaderboard is a little bit misleading. Prevost actually beat Reason-Thibault in four out of five workouts last year head-to-head, but failing to finish 19.3 under the timecap cost Prevost the top spot in Canada. The threat of strict handstand push-ups still looms as a possibility but I think there’s more out on table left that favors Prevost who has been a beast in the Open and finished 3rd worldwide in 2018.
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