Tia-Clair Toomey is Out for 2023, so Who’s the Next Women’s Champ?
In the Chicago Bulls era of the 1990’s, everyone was competing for second place, and the only chance of winning was when Michael Jordan retired. The women’s CrossFit field has just received a similar gift this holiday season, with Tia-Clair Toomey announcing that she is pregnant and will be sitting out the entire 2023 CrossFit Games season.
Toomey has won six consecutive championships from 2017-2022, making her the winningest individual in history of the CrossFit Games (male or female), and don’t forget she took second in both 2015 and 2016 as well.
However, there’s officially blood in the water and for the first year in a very long time, we all get to speculate about who is going to take over as the new women’s CrossFit champion.
What we’re all thinking: The first impulse is to assume we’ll see a race between the other two women’s podium finishers from 2022. These two athletes have proven to be in a class of their own from other top 10 athletes in the past, but which has a better chance of winning?
Mal O’Brien: Consistency is the word that comes to mind when thinking of Mal O’Brien. For someone who is only 18 years old, she is extremely well-rounded and only getting better. The protege of Mat Fraser has shown a competitive fire that makes it very clear she is not there to participate, she is training to become a multi-year champion. The absence of Toomey at the 2023 CrossFit Games may have sped up the timeline for this young phenom.
Laura Horvath: Dominance is a word that fits well when describing Laura Horvath. The three-time podium finisher has the ability to hit home runs and dominate events that line up well for her. Horvath was in a class of her own at the 2022 Rogue Invitational, winning four straight events and taking the top spot amongst a strong competitive field. Will Horvath be able to limit her finishes outside the top 15 and be consistent enough that her home runs can outshine O’Brien’s consistency?
In case you missed it: Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil and Dex Hopkins took a look at the elite teams of TYR Wodapalooza — and discussed who they’re excited to see throwdown in Miami, Florida.
Also, in case you missed it: Our most recent Coffee Break Conversation, hosted by Morning Chalk Up’s Preslie Hirsch, was with VP of Loud and Live Sports, Dylan Malitsky. Tune in for a deep dive on running a successful event (Rx only). We also dropped a recap of five of our favorite Coffee Break Conversations from 2022. Get the list, grab a cup of joe and catch up. ☕️
Looking back: What were our most viewed stories of the past year? Glad you asked, because we have the full rundown as we kick off 2023.
Local love: Great story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel about a new CrossFit gym opening in Menomonee Falls.
Morning Chalk Up’s Staff and Writers Favorite Stories of 2022
The calendar year has come to a close, welcome to 2023, and it’s important to take stock of the work you’ve done over the past 12 months, and here at the Morning Chalk Up, we’ve done just that. As we welcome in 2023, please take a moment to remember these stories–the ones closest to our hearts, and the ones that we feel highlight the very best of what we’ve done this year.
Toomey is Pregnant! How this Impacts the CrossFit Games Season
Tia and Shane gave everyone some exciting Christmas news last week as they announced their pregnancy! And that means there will be a new Fittest Woman on Earth at the 2023 CrossFit Games. But, Tia not competing this year will also impact stages in the season before we get to Madison, WI.
Morning Chalk Up’s Lauren Kalil spoke with sports analysts Dex Hopkins and Joey Adduci to discuss how Tia not competing in the 2023 season will impact the rest of the women’s field, and they even gave their “way too early” predictions for the next championship title.
This past year – 2022 – will go down in history as the year the world largely shook off the shackles of the global pandemic. An unprecedented time we are still grappling with mentally and physically, but for the most part, the masks are gone, social distancing is out the window and everyone who was planning on getting vaccinated probably already has.
It was a year of recalibration, of companies jacking up prices on consumers to recoup profits they lost during the pandemic, of regular folk dealing with unprecedented inflation because of this, and of an ever-changing job market which included the masses quitting and then largely being rehired into new, different positions.
Remote work also firmly joined our lexicon, as working from home now seems to be the norm, or at least a newly accepted norm.
Globally it was another year of uncertainty, of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as the driving newsmaker, a conflict that will surely rage well into 2023 and maybe beyond. The absolute shitstorm that was 2020 when COVID first turned the world on its head is behind us, however we are all still collectively suffering from some hive mind form of PTSD.
CrossFit had by all accounts a decent year when presented within the realm of the pandemic. Events went on largely unscathed and the CrossFit Games returned to normal for the first time in what feels like ages.
There was controversy, as there is with any sport, in any year, but nothing seemed to shake the sport to its foundational core and force the company to pivot in any major, groundbreaking way. This is a good thing.
However the season structure has once again been changed, but we have been told by CrossFit HQ this new structure will be the norm moving forward and there will be consistency from now on.
We also found out the CrossFit Games will be moving to a new location–Birmingham, Alabama–in 2024 which some might think is a head scratching move, while others will see the merit.
CrossFit is a sport with baggage. A history of past owners and figures, of an old guard that will go to its grave before it relinquishes power to a new age and way of thinking. It’s safe to say over the years, CrossFit’s biggest enemy has always been itself, and its inability to grow both organically, and at a pace that allows it to keep up with the times.
But this is not a sport that is by any means withering or fading off into the ether. CrossFit boxes are booming, people are still working out every day in record numbers and the one benefit of the pandemic is people are taking their health more seriously these days.
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