CrossFit Games

Seven Noteworthy Masters Winning Performances at the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games

August 3, 2023 by
Photo Credit: @avakitzi
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It’s a wrap. The masters competition at the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games, that is.

After three days of competition, 14 masters athletes—seven men and seven women—were crowned the Fittest on Earth in their age group, six of whom stood atop the podium for the first time.

The other eight winners have been there before, and lived up to the pressure to become repeat champions. Or in Susan Clarke’s case, a six-time champion. 

Seven Standout Champion Performances of 2023

Sam Dancer Dominates

Former team athlete best known for pulling a 615-pound deadlift at the 2016 CrossFit Games, Sam Dancer took down the highly competitive men’s 35-39-year-old division, controlling the lead from start to finish.

Dancer, who withdrew from the Games last year due to a bicep injury, finished the competition 70 points ahead of Greece’s Ioannis Papadopoulos and announced in a post-test interview that he plans to “retire” from masters competition and compete in the individual division next season.

Susan Clarke Steals Six

Susan Clarke made winning her sixth CrossFit Games title look easy, cruising her way to a 50-point victory in the women’s 60-64-year-old division.

What makes her win so impressive is that Clarke is 64, meaning the oldest in her age group, so it’s hard to imagine we won’t see her become a seven-time champion next year, should she compete in the 65-plus division.

Laurie Clement Cements Herself Among the Fittest

France’s Laurie Clement, a rookie Games competitor, became the fittest 35-39-year-old woman in a division of seasoned veterans, including former individual stars Stacie Tovar and Dani Horan (and Chyna Cho, who withdrew before the competition began).

Clement had a hard time on the final test of the weekend, but she had built herself a big enough buffer— thanks to three test wins along the way—that her eighth place finish kept her ahead of second place finisher Tovar, who won the final test, by 20 points.

Kevin Koester Crushes 

In the men’s 50-54-year-old division, not only did Kevin Koester become a four-time Games champion on Thursday, he did it by beating the next best competitor, John Kim, by 190 points—the most dominant performance in any division.

To get there, Koester logged four test wins, and didn’t have a single finish worse than third overall.

Cheryl Brost is Back

After competing at three CrossFit Games as an individual in 2010, 2011 and 2012, Cheryl Brost became a mainstay in masters competition, winning the 45-49-year-old division in both 2016 and 2017.

Since then, Brost has been kept off the podium. Until now.

It came down to the wire on Thursday. Heading into the final event, she trailed Nicole Abbott by 10 points, but Brost left it all on the floor in the final test, picking up the win, while Abbott placed fourth, giving Brost the women’s 50-54-year-old title by 20 points.

Sam Briggs Scraps her Way to Victory

The 2013 CrossFit Games champion Sam Briggs, now 41, had plenty of competition in the women’s 40-44-year-old division—just 20 points separated the top four heading into Thursday—but it was Briggs who hung on for the overall win.

Briggs started Thursday with a test win, and went on to place sixth on the final test. That being said, she beat the one woman she needed to beat— Brazil’s Andreia Pinheiro—helping her take the title by 30 points.

Jason Grubb Grinds Another One

Three-time champion Jason Grubb was the overwhelming favorite in the men’s 45-49-year-old division, and he lived up to the hype, beating Vlad Liashkevich by 80 points to take his fourth title.

To get there, Grubb picked up three test wins, two seconds and never had a finish outside of the top five. 

The big picture: The 140 masters athletes who represented this week at the 2023 NOBULL CrossFit Games this week are the ultimate proof that being fit isn’t a young person’s game. And while each division could only have one winner, the level of fitness and athleticism they all showcased could run circles around the average 25-year-old. But for most of them, what’s even more important than their finish on the leaderboard is maintaining their health and fitness. For life.

Final Results

Women’s 35-39

1 Laurie Clement

2 Stacie Tovar

3 Colette Casey

Men’s 35-39

1 Sam Dancer

2 Ioannis Papadopoulos

3 Bryan Wong

Women’s 40-44

1 Samantha Briggs

2 Andreia Pinheiro

3 Jenn Ryan

Men’s 40-44

1 Rudolph Berger

2 Michael Laverriere

3 Bruno Militao

Women’s 45-49

1 Kelly Friel

2 Amy Chapoton

3 Carolina Gutierrez

Men’s 45-49

1 Jason Grubb

2 Vlad Liashkevich

3 Christopher Anderson

Women’s 50-54

1 Cheryl Brost

2 Nicole Abbott

3 Nathalie Connors

Men’s 50-54

1 Artur Komorowski

2 Sean Patrick

3 Jason Leeves

Women’s 55-59

1 Leka Fineman

2 Shanna Bunce

3 Laurie Meschishnick

Men’s 55-59

1 Kevin Koester

2 John Kim

3 Ryan Joe Hamby

Women’s 60-64

1 Susan Clark

2 Betsy Vanderburgh

3 Patricia McGill

Men’s 60-64

1 Stuart Swanson

2 Tom Fameree

3 Eric Cohen

Women’s 65 +

1 Julie Holt

2 Dava Jensen

3 Pauline Sciascia

Men’s 65 +

1 Daniel Miller

2 David Hippensteel

3 Tom Muhlbeier

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