Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. The Norwegian CrossFit Championship wrapped up yesterday and Tommy Marquez has a full recap. And, the coronavirus continues to make big news across the globe, we’ve got our eyes on the Asia CrossFit Championship later this year and any possible implications. Today:
The Norwegian CrossFit Championship Recap.
Brittney Kleyn reports on the coronavirus and the Asia CrossFit Championship.
“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.” — Mark Twain
Roelle, Migala, The Progrm Win In Norway, Venäläinen Earns Invite
The 2020 Norwegian CrossFit Championship has come to a close, and after three days of competition on the snow-filled mountainside of the Storefjell Resort, three champions have been crowned and three more athletes deemed worthy of a CrossFit Games invitation. All three elite divisions came down to the wire in the final workout, which set the stage for some tremendous finishes across the board.
All weekend long the battle at the top between The Progrm and The Athlete Program felt like a heavyweight prizefight between well-matched opponents trading haymakers. On the final day, The Progrm held a 13 point lead and with only two events on the day, The Athlete Program could win out and still lose if the Progrm held onto 2nd place in each workout.
The Athlete Program managed to win the first workout of the day to apply pressure going into the final, knowing they’d need some help from another team. Early on in the couplet of synchro chest-to-bar pull-ups and worm thrusters, The Athlete Program jumped out to a lead. Attention turned to the rest of the field for signs of help, but The Progrm provided an answer of their own, by tracking down the lead and sealing the deal for their Games invite with an event win to close the weekend.
Gabriela Migala was the model of consistency all weekend as the only female to finish every event in the top ten. By Sunday she’d built a comfortable lead over second-place Andrea Solberg, and a pair of top-three finishes to close gave Migala her first-ever Sanctional win, after taking 4th in Dubai, and 2nd at Strength in Depth. Migala has been the most active Sanctional athlete so far this season, competing in three events already, and her performances point towards a dramatic improvement at the Games.
Thanks to Migala and Solberg already having their spot at the Games, the Norwegian invitation was passed down to Sanna Venäläinen. The second fittest woman in Finland in this year’s Open outlasted six other women who were all within a close enough point spread to have a chance at earning the invite for themselves. The soft-spoken, relatively unknown Venäläinen was steady and composed on Sunday, finishing all three events in the top five to hold off a hard-charging Jacqueline Dahlstrøm. Dahlstrøm nearly completed the comeback by winning the final event, but Venäläinen did just enough to hold onto a seven-point margin to earn her first trip as an individual to the CrossFit Games.
The weeks leading up to Norway for Griffin Roelle were stressful, to say the least. After initially being towards the top of the Rogue Invitational Qualifier leaderboard, major penalties knocked him out of a qualifying spot during the final video review. Not one to dwell on the negative for very long, Roelle parlayed his frustration into an impressive winning performance to earn a spot at the CrossFit Games as a consolation.
After finishing dead last in the first event, Roelle came storming back with six top-five finishes in the next eight events including three event wins. Two of those wins came on the final day, in the final two events, and resulted in some highlight-reel moments that sent the crowd into a frenzy. The first came during the 3 rep max front squat when Roelle made 165kg/363lbs look like a toy. The second came with the Games invite on the line, and Roelle in a heated battle with Viktor Langsved. The man who goes by “CrossFit Thor,” dropped the hammer on the final set of 60kg thrusters and bar muscle-ups to put the finishing touches on his win and wash away the sting of prior weeks. Roelle won’t be making the trip to Columbus for the Rogue Invitational in May, but a trip to Madison in August is a worthy substitute.
CrossFit HQ “Monitoring The Situation In China”
With one Sanctional already postponed this season, there’s a possibility of a second being pushed back or taken off the schedule amid the international health scare of Coronavirus.
We’ve been in contact with CrossFit HQ who has confirmed they’re “monitoring the situation in China.”
CrossFit’s Johnathan Haynes said: “We are in consistent communication with the ACC (Asia CrossFit Championship), and it will provide updates as they become available.”
There is no timeline or deadline as to when a decision must be made ahead of the live competition in May.
The Morning Chalk Up has been closely monitoring the situation since last month, talking with those in China organizing the Asia CrossFit Championship.
At this stage the event is still pushing ahead, with registrations now closed after the deadline was pushed back 10 days for final workout submissions.
The Morning Chalk Up has spoken with several athletes who had planned on competing at ACC but are now reconsidering.
Just this week, the Chinese province at the center of the Coronavirus outbreak reported a record rise in the death toll and infection numbers.
Global health experts have warned the epidemic in China could get far worse before it’s brought under control.
The ACC live event is set to begin May 8 however, the organizers haven’t ruled out postponing the event until 2021.
So, what happens to the Games invites?
Nothing, actually. CrossFit HQ said, no event, no ticket.
Already two individual tickets and a team spot have been cut after the CrossFit Fittest in Cape Town was postponed in November, due to a venue dispute.
At the time we looked at the issue in detail, but in short, a charity match between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal on the same weekend was given precedence.
CrossFit HQ’s Johnathan Haynes added: “Both of these events are experiencing circumstances outside of their control, and each event is handling the situation well up to this point.”
The Morning Chalk Up will continue to follow developments with CrossFit HQ and Asia CrossFit Championship organizers, as both continue to keep the health of athletes and spectators top priority.
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Sanctionals News and Notes
The Buttery Bros and Sammy Moniz are hosting a pancake breakfast at Wodapalooza. Entries are limited, winners will be selected on Feb. 19.
Matilde Garnes of The Progrm makes a boss move during partner deadlift event
Matilde Garnes of Team The Progrm, winners of the Norwegian CrossFit Championship, switches out with her male partner, Joshua Wichtrup during the partner deadlifts of Event Four on Saturday. Tommy Marquez: “I just saw something I’ve never seen before.”
Is your shoe closet looking a little tired and beat up? Spruce it up with a new addition. The most comfortable, most versatile training shoe NIKE has ever made is now on sale. Remember, every Metcon comes with Hyperlift heel inserts to give you a little lift to tackle all those training goals. So not only can you brighten up your shoe closet with a new pair of kicks, you can take your training to the next level at the same time.
The Power Monkey Podcast with guest Chris Hinshaw, Aerobic Capacity Founder
The Power Monkey Podcast, hosted by founders Dave Durante and Chad Vaughn recently sat down with the creator of CrossFit Aerobic Capacity and coach to elite athletes, Chris Hinshaw. They discuss what it takes to be a great coach, what the current landscape of fitness is missing, and their new joint venture: Capacity WOD.
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Here are some affiliate news and notes that have come across our radar over the past few days:
CrossFit Scotland, in Irvine, North Ayrshire is celebrating its 12th anniversary. Original
owners Ron McKinstray and Neil Foley are still there coaching classes.
BayState CrossFit in Plymouth, MA is hosting a Marathon Row Fundraiser on March 7 to benefit The Cardinal Cushing Center. The Center supports people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, providing possibilities and opportunities for growth and advancement. Frank Walsh, a member of BayState, is running the Boston Marathon and 100% of the $10,000 he has pledged to raise is going to The Cardinal Cushing Center where his brother attends.
Keep It Real CrossFit in Butte, MT hosted a women’s empowerment WOD on Sunday, February 16. They teamed up with other local businesses like Kayla Jane Pilates, Lone Peak Physical Therapy and others to teach women about living a healthier life, introduce them to CrossFit and show them the health and fitness options available in Butte.
BrewCity CrossFit, in Milwaukee, WI, a nine-year affiliate, is expanding its current location to accommodate its growing membership. The gym is adding 4500 square feet, reported owner Danny Noonan.