CrossFit Games

Ricky Garard Out for 2023 Season After Shoulder Injury

Photo Credit: Ava Kitzi
Enjoying Morning Chalk Up? Access additional exclusive interviews, analyses, and stories with an Rx membership.

Ricky Garard is currently in recovery from shoulder surgery after a mountain biking accident in late March led to “a ruptured AC joint and shoulder damage,” according to a video released by Garard on his YouTube Channel. 

“I can’t really believe that it’s happened, to be honest,” Garard said. “But it is what it is and I just have to cop it on the chin and accept the reality of it. I suppose it’s the price I pay for the life I want to live.”

Garard’s recovery is expected to take four to six months. With the Torian Pro Semifinal taking place six weeks from now, the current third Fittest Man on Earth will not be competing in the remainder of the 2023 CrossFit Games season.

  • Justin Cotler, Garard’s coach at Underdogs Athletics said: “This is obviously a heavy blow. I truly believe Ricky would have won the 2023 CrossFit Games. But if history has taught us anything, it’s how mentally and physically resilient he is.”
  • “I know he’ll be laser focused with his recovery, and you can guarantee he’ll be back with a vengeance next season,” Cotler concluded.

I just have to cop it on the chin and accept the reality of it. I suppose it’s the price I pay for the life I want to live.

Ricky Garard, in YouTube video announcing season-ending shoulder injury

Remind me: The news is devastating for the Australian athlete who only recently came back to the sport after finishing out his four-year suspension due to a drug testing violation during the 2017 CrossFit Games—his rookie year. 

  • His first competition back after his suspension was the Dubai CrossFit Championship in 2021 where he took third place. Garard went on to qualify for the 2022 NOBULL CrossFit Games via Australia’s Torian Pro where he took first. 

Garard placed third at the 2022 Games, which marked a massive comeback and set the stage for what many would assume to be several more seasons of dominance. Garard’s return to the sport was not only a test for himself, but for the entire CrossFit community which ultimately welcomed him back with open arms. 

The off-season started a little questionable for Garard with a middle-of-the-pack 10th place finish at the 2022 Rogue Invitational.

  • He was set to compete at the Dubai Fitness Championship in December, but withdrew to “set him up for a successful season,” according to an Instagram post from Cotler.

It wasn’t long, however, before the rugby player from Down Under was back on top.

  • Garard blew through the men’s field at TYR Wodapalooza, taking first over 2022 CrossFit Games silver medalist Roman Khrennikov, and solidifying his place as one of the fittest men in the sport today.

Most recently, Garard took seventh place worldwide in the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Open and 15th at Quarterfinals. He would have been the top-seeded male competing in the Oceania region’s Torian Pro Semifinal, scheduled to take place May 26-28 in Brisbane

With Garard out, Khan Porter nursing a back injury, Royce Dunne going team, Bayden Brown taking the year off, and Tia-Clair Toomey and Kara Saunders both out for pregnancies, we are sure to see some new names representing Oceania at the 2023 CrossFit Games.

Get the Newsletter

For a daily digest of all things CrossFit. Community, Competitions, Athletes, Tips, Recipes, Deals and more.

"*" indicates required fields

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.