Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. The Australian CrossFit Championship, the ninth Sanctional of the 2020 season, starts today and as the official media partner, we have a full preview below. And, a tornado tore through eastern Tennessee, hitting at least one CrossFit affiliate. Today:
Preview and How to Watch: Australian CrossFit Championship.
The coronavirus pandemic causes the Asia CrossFit Championship to be postponed, the new dates are July 3-5.
CrossFit Hermitage suffers a direct hit from a tornado, we’ll keep you apprised of how to help.
The Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge’s elite division rosters have been finalized, and we break them down for you.
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Games Invitations Up for Grabs at the Australian CrossFit Championship
It’s summertime in the Southern Hemisphere, which is fitting since the action is expected to be hot and sweaty at the upcoming Australian CrossFit Championship. Four days of competition await the top athletes in the Pacific region, March 5-8 at the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre in Queensland, Australia.
What’s on the line: Elite individuals and teams will be battling for their 2020 CrossFit Games invitation. The podium finishers will also receive a cash prize.
Who to watch: The field predominantly consists of athletes from Australia and New Zealand, giving the Sanctional a throwback CrossFit Pacific Regional feel. Athletes from the USA, France, Denmark, United Kingdom, South Africa, Canada, Sweden and Israel are also represented in the individual field.
The women’s division: The women’s field consists of 32 athletes, only two of whom have secured their invitations to the Games. Twenty one of the women have competed at a Regional either as an individual or on a team.
Kara Saunders headlines the field as she makes her first Sanctional appearance since the format started. Saunders was last seen competing at the 2018 CrossFit Games where she finished fourth. The seven-time Games athlete sat out the last season after giving birth to a baby girl in June. Just five months after giving birth, she competed and placed 12th in the CrossFit Games Worldwide Open, finishing as the second-fittest in Australia and punching her eighth ticket to the Games.
Madeline Sturt is the other female athlete who has received a Games invitation. She received the invite last week after Annie Thorisdottir declined her Open invitation due to her pregnancy. The Australian has competed at the Games four-straight years, finishing 22nd last year. Sturt received her Games invite last year through the Australian CrossFit Championship after finishing second.
Mia Hesketh makes her first appearance this season as an individual competitor. She has made two appearances at the Games on a team, most recently with her husband Phil Hesketh last year with CrossFit Alioth, where they finished eighth.
Courtney Haley has three Games appearances including last year where she placed 29th as an individual. She is seeking her third-straight invite.
New Zealander Marnie Sykes competes in her third Sanctional of the season. She came up short in gaining her first ever Games invitation at the CrossFit Pandaland Challenge where she finished third. Last year at the Australian CrossFit Championship she placed fourth just two spots out of qualifying.
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Asia CrossFit Championship Postponed
The Asia CrossFit Championship has now officially been postponed due to the ongoing threat of Coronavirus.
What happened: We’ve been following developments closely since the start of the outbreak, as CrossFit HQ continued to monitor developments in conjunction with event organizers.
They’re not the only ones:
The Compex Box Challenge in Italy has also been rescheduled to December this year after confirmed cases of the deadly virus in northern Italy. The international fitness competition was originally scheduled for Feb 22-23 in Piacenza, Italy.
The event took to Instagram this week to confirm, it’s business as usual for now: “We keep monitoring the situation and working closely with the local and national health and sport authorities to guarantee a safe event for athletes, spectators and for our staff,” the post read.
The CrossFit German Throwdown has also issued a Coronavirus Update. Currently, the event is still scheduled to take place on March 28 & 29 in Berlin.
There’s also whispers the Tokyo Olympics — which is on the same week of the 2020 CrossFit Games – could also be canceled, amid more confirmed cases of Coronavirus in Japan.
Affiliates worldwide have also been warning members to be alert but not alarmed.
San Francisco CrossFit sent a memo to all members with a few simple guidelines including a warning to stay away if you’re ill, wash down all equipment and wash your hands, often: “While we don’t want to jump on the panic train, we do want our community to know what we’re doing to keep you safe,” the memo read.
ACC is the second sanctioned event to be affected this season. “The Fittest in Cape Town” was postponed indefinitely due to a venue dispute.
CrossFit HQ confirmed, “no event, no ticket”: If the Asia CrossFit Championship is ultimately canceled, another team would miss out out on an opportunity to compete at the 2020 CrossFit Games. We hope that doesn’t happen and will monitor the situation in the coming weeks.
Tornado Rips through Tennessee, Hits CrossFit Hermitage. Mayhem, Others OK.
Tornadoes ripped through downtown Nashville and across eastern Tennessee early in the morning on March 3 as families slept in their beds, shredding more than 140 buildings and burying people in mounds of rubble and wreckage. At least 22 people were killed, according to authorities.
Affiliates affected: According to early reports, we’ve confirmed that one affiliate took a direct hit from the storm: CrossFit Hermitage in Hermitage, TN. CrossFit Mayhem in Cookeville, TN confirmed that the gym is up and running as normal.
CrossFit Mt Juliet posted to Facebook: “Please pray for those who have lost everything after the horrific tornado that ripped through our community. Our friends at CrossFit Hermitage took a total loss; we are praying for you. Our doors are always open for you guys!”
CrossFit Forte posted on Instagram: “We hope everyone is doing OK… Please reach out if we can assist with anything that the Tornado caused.”
CrossFit Music City posted: “Thankful this morning that our gym and members are all ok. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all of those effected by the tornadoes. If anyone needs anything, don’t hesitate to reach out!”
CrossFit East Nashville confirmed that their gym is safe, but the surrounding area had been decimated: “All classes today are canceled. The gym is not damaged. The area around the gym is unfathomable and we need to keep roads clear for emergency crews. Go hug your friends and family. Love y’all.”
CrossFit 615 added: “We’re devastated and heart broken by the destruction of our hometown by the tornado last night. Our thoughts and prayers are with everyone who has been affected. ❤️”
The Morning Chalk Up is monitoring the situation and will keep you apprised of the situation and how to help.
Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge Individual and Team Rosters Announced
The Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge has finalized its elite division rosters for the Sanctional on April 17-19. A field of 40 male and female individuals as well as 40 teams will take the competition floor at the historic DC Armory in Washington, DC for the chance to secure an invitation to the 2020 CrossFit Games.
Women’s division: There is no shortage of elite competition experience in the women’s field as 34 of the 40 athletes have Games or Regionals experience. Currently four of the women have secured invitations to this year’s Games.
Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault repeated as the national champion of Canada through the Open to secure her sixth-straight Games invitation. Last year she placed 16th at the Games; her fourth time in the top-20.
Meg Reardon returns as the defending champion at the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge (MACC) where she earned her invite to the 2019 Games and placed 23rd. This year she earned her third invitation to the Games after finishing 31st in the Open.
MaryKay Dreisilker received her first career Games invitation this year after finishing 35th in the Open.
Kelsey Kiel is the fourth athlete in the field who has punched her ticket to the 2020 Games so far this season. She earned her invite after placing fifth at Strength in Depth.
Colleen Fotsch is a two-times CrossFit Games athlete, who helped NorCal CrossFit Redwood City to a fourth-place finish in 2017. Last season she made the Games as an individual when she placed 27th in the Worldwide Open. She just missed securing the Games invite at Wodapalooza as she finished 11th in a stacked field.
Paige Semenza is a three-time Games qualifier, competing twice as an individual including last year when she placed 30th overall. She received her invite through a Sanctional when she placed second at the Brazil CrossFit Championship. Last year she competed at the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge (MACC) where she placed fifth.
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