Emma Cary Comes From Behind, Wins Wodapalooza

January 12, 2024 by
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Last year, Emma Cary used Wodapalooza as her comeback competition after a back injury ended her 2022 season. She finished third. This year, she used it to prove she’s a real podium contender at this summer’s CrossFit Games. 

The 19-year-old topped all competitors at the 2024 TYR Wodapalooza in Miami, FL on Friday, beating the third and fourth-place finishers from last summer’s Games, Arielle Loewen and Gabi Migala, along the way. 

Migala, who led after Day 1 in Miami, finished second, while Games Veteran Danielle Brandon was third, Loewen fourth, and Sweden’s Rebecka Vitesson fifth.

The details:

Elite Indy Event 5: Wipeout

The first of two events on Friday featured a 40-calorie Echo bike, followed by a swim in the bay, 150 beaded double-unders, another swim, and ended with a 500-meter Assault run.

  • Athletes in the final heat were all chasing Australia’s Emily de Rooy’s time from Heat 1, a task fellow Australian Grace Walton had no trouble challenging. 
  • Walton, sixth at the 2023 Oceania Semifinals, took the lead on the first swim and held onto it until the end, picking up an event win, adding to the evidence that Australian athletes can swim.
  • Cary, however, held her own. She stayed close to Walton and Canada’s Emily Rolfe, the fan pick to win the event, and finished second overall. 
  • De Rooy’s time held up for third overall, while Rolfe finished fourth and Migala fifth, meaning Cary passed her on the overall leaderboard and entered the final event with a three-point lead over Migala.

Event 6: El Circo

The final event of the competition—a technical gymnastics event with rope climbs, toes-to-bar, handstand walking, and mixed grip kettlebell lunges—belonged to, no surprise, Brandon, well-known to dominate any event with handstand walking.

  • Brandon might have been in a class of her own, picking up an easy event win, but Cary was no slouch. She stayed in her lane and looked poised as she held off the woman she needed to stay ahead of: Migala. 
  • Cary picked up her second straight second-place finish, while Migala finished right behind her in third.
  • Loewen, too, was solid for fourth, but it wasn’t enough to get her onto the podium this time. She finished fourth overall, exactly where she entered the day.

The big picture: It’s early in the season still, but that doesn’t mean a Wodapalooza win won’t help Cary’s confidence heading into the 2024 season. At 19 years old, the former teen champion has officially made it known that she is a force to be reckoned with and is a podium threat at this summer’s Games in Fort Worth, TX.

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