Age Group Athletes Find Alternative Competitions, Raising Questions about the CrossFit Games Supremacy
When CrossFit HQ announced the cancelations of the age group divisions and later the team competition for the 2020 CrossFit Games, it left 196 athletes without a conclusion to their season. The question of “what’s next” for those athletes was answered quickly as a number of organizations and even athletes themselves took matters into their own hands to end their seasons as intended — on the competition floor.
One big thing: There is a giant question emerging as alternative competitions start to take shape and court major sponsors — will the CrossFit Games hold on to its position as the preeminent fitness competition in the world? From the standpoint of age group athletes and teams, that is an unanswered question. In the last 14 months, age group athletes have seen their divisions cut in half, live coverage discontinued entirely, and now their season championship canceled outright.
What are the alternatives?: When HQ announced that they would not crown a champion in the canceled divisions, athletes without a proper conclusion to their seasons expressed a breadth of emotions, most called for some sort of finality to all the hard work they put in, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. Heeding their requests, a number of events have stepped up to take on that demand.
The Legends Masters Competition quickly jumped into action and immediately offered automatic qualifying spots for their Masters-only competition.
- In its fourth year of existence, the competition was originally set to take place at the Del Mar Fairgrounds in California on September 10-13. Due to the pandemic, they moved the location to Phoenix, Arizona and changed the date to December 10-13.
- The competition offers 14 age group divisions, seven each for men and women. Those age groups are 35-39, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, 60-64 and 65+.
- The top ten qualifiers from the 2020 CrossFit Age Group Online Qualifiers will receive automatic invites. For others, the competition will hold their online qualifier August 12-September 1.
- Two workouts will be released each week during the qualifier.
- Registration is currently open for the event on Competition Corner.
The Masters Fitness Collective is currently planning a competition for Masters athletes as well.
- The organization was founded by masters athletes with the hope of uniting fellow athletes with each other around the world.
- They have released a survey for the top AGOQ athletes.
- The competition is currently slated to take place in Fort Wayne, Indiana from August 20-23.
- Right now they have extended invitations to the top Masters qualifiers through the AGOQ and are considering extending the invites to the top-20 in each division.
- CJ Martin of CrossFit Invictus has agreed to program the events for the competition.
- They are currently working on gaining sponsorships from many of the top CrossFit brands.
Bruce Marko and Andy Hendel are Games veterans that have competed multiple times in the Masters divisions and are planning on throwing a 60+ only competition.
- They are planning on hosting a competition in Charlotte, North Carolina in September.
- The competition will have both men’s and women’s divisions with automatic invites to the top-15 athletes from the AGOQ in the 60+ division.
- They are currently in the process of securing sponsorships for their event.
- For more information on the event contact Bruce Marko.
The Pit Fitness Ranch Teen Games has picked up traction since a Zoom conference call on May 1 hosted by Azariah Price, a 2019 Games athlete in the 14-15 boys division.
- The competition will feature the 14-15 and 16-17 age group divisions for both boys and girls.
- The location is the 65-acre Pit Fitness Ranch located in Three Rivers, Michigan during Labor Day weekend, September 3-6.
- Invitations have been extended to the top-ten from the AGOQ. Those who cannot attend will be backfilled through the AGOQ.
- A number of teen athletes have already been confirmed including Stefano Zucchiatti, Sophia Shaft, Dariana Rosales and Landen Ryan.
- The organizers of the competition have created a survey for those interested in competing in the event.
- The Morning Chalk Up’s very own Niki Brazier and Justin LoFranco discussed the competition during a recent episode of The Bottom Line.
- The team-only event will be held in Cookeville, Tennessee at CrossFit Mayhem.
- The nine teams that earned a CrossFit Games invite through the Sanctionals will receive automatic invitations.
- Three more additional teams will be added to the competition through an online qualifier.
- The date and who will program the event will be announced soon.