15-Year-Old Josh Strange Fired Up for CrossFit Games After 2021 Covid Disruptions in Australia
Last year, 15-year-old Australian Josh Strange was on track for his biggest summer vacation yet: Madison, WI to compete at the CrossFit Games.
However, due to Australia’s COVID restrictions, which prohibited children under 16-years-old from getting the vaccine, Strange was held back from participating in the 14-15 division.
Strange had placed sixth in the 2021 Open, and just squeaked by in the AGOQ with a 20th place finish. But he knew all throughout the qualifying season that getting to the Games might be a more difficult process than just a few weeks of online competition.
According to Strange, extreme lockdowns in the country fluctuated almost in line with school holidays, so Strange didn’t have total confidence. When it was confirmed that he wouldn’t be able to make it to the United States, though, Strange says it was initially a hard loss to move past.
- “At that point (after the 2021 AGOQ), it sucked because it seemed like the end of the world,” Strange said. Luckily, the Brisbane-native was able to get back on his feet and set his eyes on the 2022 season. “Obviously it wasn’t (the end of the world): the days kept going, and come September or October, I started to think ‘okay, let’s give it our all,’” Strange said.
Flash forward to April of 2022, though, and Strange might finally punch his ticket across the Pacific to America. With a second and fourth-place finish in the Open and Age Group Quarterfinals respectively, Strange is setting himself up for success later in the year. And, after a year of setbacks, training, and lessons learned, he is more poised than ever for a podium spot at the Games.
Strange has also been gaining outside competition experience which has helped him develop as an athlete even while being sequestered at home.
- Strange won Best Lifter (Under 15 Boys) in the Australian Youth Olympic Weightlifting Nationals in 2021, with a 420-pound total. In addition, Strange took home silver in the 2021 Torian Pro 14-15 Boys competition, including top three finishes in half of the events.
The teen recently switched to PRVN’s competitor’s track, which Strange said has resulted in constant improvements, both in his athletic performance and confidence. “It sucked that I couldn’t make it (in 2021), but I knew (2022) would be my year.”