Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. We are coming in hot today with a preview of the CrossFit Mayhem Classic, the fifth Sanctional of the 2019-2020 CrossFit Games season. And, Tommy Marquez sat down for an exclusive interview with Sara Sigmundsdottir on the heels of her third Sanctioned event win; she’s the first athlete in the sport to win three Sanctionals. Plus:
Dani Speegle has a scare in Colorado.
Strength in Depth sells out and secures more seats.
The affiliate community hits January hard with fundraisers and competitions.
“One foot in front of the other. Repeat as often as necessary to finish.”
— Haruki Murakami
First in 2020, Mayhem Leads Off U.S. Sanctionals
After a three week break, the 2019-2020 CrossFit Sanctional season resumes with the first of seven Sanctionals on U.S. soil. CrossFit Mayhem will host the Mayhem Classic in Cookeville, Tennessee on January 10-12.
What’s on the line: Two more 2020 CrossFit Games invitations will be up for grabs, one each in the male and female divisions. A prize purse of $81,000 provided by Reebok and AdvoCare will pay out to finishers first through tenth in both divisions.
First — $15,000
Second — $10,000
Third — $5,000
Fourth — $3,000
Fifth — $2,500
Sixth — $2,000
Seventh — $1,500
Eighth — $1,000
Ninth — $500
Tenth — $250
Worth noting: Mayhem does not have a team division.
Who to watch: Thirty-three of the 60 athletes competing have CrossFit Games experience, including two individual champions and two athletes that were members of a championship team.
Three-time and defending Fittest Woman on Earth Tia-Clair Toomey will take the competition floor for the first time this season. Toomey, who trains at Mayhem, has secured an invitation for this year’s Games as the Australian national champion in the CrossFit Open.
The 2015 Fittest Man on Earth Ben Smith will compete in his first Sanctional of the season. He has secured his 12th-straight Games appearance with a 28th place finish in the Open.
Joining Toomey and Smith are ten other athletes who have received invitations to the 2020 Games.
For the women, Kristi Eramo-O’Connell (14th in the Open) and Brooke Haas (22nd in the Open) have received invites. Haas is expected to decline hers to go team with ROMWOD Meatsquad who won the team division at the Filthy 150 to earn an automatic berth in the Games.
Danielle Brandon placed 10th in the Games as a rookie last year. She is expected to receive a 2020 Games invitation due to Haas and two other females above the line going team.
On the men’s side, the 2020 Games qualifiers include a trio from Quebec led by Canadian national champion Jeffrey Adler. Samuel Cournoyer (12th in the Open) and Alexandre Caron (23rd in the Open) round out the Quebecers representing their province in Cookeville and the Games.
A day after securing her third Sanctionals victory to become the first athlete to reach that milestone, Morning Chalk Up sat down with Sara Sigmundsdottir for an unscripted interview to learn more about the woman behind the athlete.
Some Quick Stats: Sigmundsdottir’s performance since her Games-ending injury in 2018 has been remarkably consistent. The only black mark on her record is the disappointing 20th place finish at the 2019 Games, to which she admitted in an interview was a result of putting too much pressure on herself to overachieve coming back from 2018.
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Speegle Shaken Up After Car Accident in Colorado
CrossFit Games athlete Dani Speegle was involved in a car accident Tuesday evening near Tabernash, Colorado. Speegle lost control of her vehicle on a snow-covered mountain road causing the vehicle to slide off the road and down into a ditch. The driver’s side of the vehicle hit trees and came to a stop when a tree halted its descent. The driver’s side door was pinned against Speegle and the window shattered as she waited for help.
Speegle said in a statement: “I’m okay, no lasting injuries. Just banged up a bit and sore from the impact. Just happy to be here. If I had done the same thing just 30 seconds more up the road, I would’ve gone off the legit side of the mountain. I don’t know if I would’ve survived that fall so, I’m just happy I’m here today.”
Speegle would go on to say that she was checked for a possible concussion, and she and her team are taking all the necessary precautions to make sure she has no lingering effects of the accident.
Why she’s in Colorado: Speegle is in Colorado for a winter collection photo shoot with fellow Born Primitive brand ambassadors Scott Panchik, Bethany Shadburne, Amanda Barnhart, Alison Scudds and Josie Hamming.
Speegle’s team and friends were able to help her out of the vehicle with no further injury. She was thankful for them as well as all the fans who have reached out to her since the accident.
“I meant it when I told people to hug their loved ones a little tighter today,” said Speegle. “Things happen so fast.”
London Sanctional Sells Out, Expands Tickets to 5500
The CrossFit Strength in Depth Sanctional has expanded their ticket availability for the January 24-26 competition in London, England. After selling out their original allotment, they have been able to increase seating by an additional 1,300 seats.
A 30% Increase: Last year’s attendance topped out at 4,200. This year’s spectator capacity in NOCCO Arena is now 5,500.
Spectators wanting to purchase tickets must join the online waitlist on the Strength in Depth website. Tickets will go on sale at 10:00 AM GTM Friday, 2:00 AM Pacific.
What caused the sellout: Strength in Depth’s star-studded lineup can be credited with the ticket demands and immediate sellout. The Sanctional will host the competition debut of four-time Fittest Man on Earth Mathew Fraser as well as the reigning four-time Fittest Team on Earth in CrossFit Mayhem Freedom. Mayhem will also send 2019 CrossFit Games Rookie of the Year Hayley Adams across the pond as an individual.
Strength in Depth has been known to attract the best athletes across Europe as well and this year is no exception.
Also on the list: Roman Khrennikov, Bronislaw Olenkowicz, Lukas Hogberg, Laura Horvath, Zack George, Haley Adams, Camilla Salomonsson Hellman, and Gabriela Migala.
Armen Hammer on the 2020 Open Leaderboard
Armen Hammer breaks down some observations from the finalized Open leaderboard and a few key implications on the CrossFit Games season overall.
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Upcoming Events and Fundraisers Around the Affiliate Community
As the Sanctionals season is heating back up following the December break, local affiliates and event organizers are announcing lots of competitions, memorial WODs, and fundraisers. Here are just a few on our radar:
Row’d Royaltyis launching their 8th annual online, indoor rowing competition beginning on January 16. The event lasts four weeks and consists of four workouts broken down by age group categories up to 70+. There’s even a “short” and “tall” division to even things out. Event sponsor Concept 2 will be raffling off a rower to one participant per week and there are cash prizes for participants, so get registered now!
CrossFit North Reston in Reston, VA is joining the efforts to raise funds for Red Cross Australia. On Saturday, January 25, they will do #burpeesforbushfires and complete one burpee for every dollar raised on their GoFundMe page.
Strange CrossFit in North Hollywood, CA is offering Morning Chalk Up readers a discounted registration for the 2nd annual Valentine’s Day Crush competition on February, 15. Use code “CHALKUP20” to save $20.
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