“This is a special recognition for CrossFit, the CrossFit Games, and the volunteers, staff and partners that work tirelessly to make our events special.” ~Justin Bergh, General Manager of the CrossFit Games
CrossFit Inc. was awarded top honors for producing the Best Professional Multi-Sport or Multi-Discipline Event for 2012 by "SportsTravel" magazine.
Spanning four days in July 2012 in front of more than 12,000 spectators at the StubHub Center (formerly Home Depot Center) in Carson, Calif., and broadcast to millions more around the globe, the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games were the culmination of Open and Regional competition between thousands of athletes to discover the fittest man and woman on the planet. CrossFit has been nominated for the past two years.
"It's been exciting to see the growth of CrossFit, and this "SportsTravel" award is well-deserved given the quality of the multi-discipline events CrossFit organizes," said Timothy Schneider, publisher of "SportsTravel" magazine. "But CrossFit is obviously more than a sporting event--it's all about a healthy lifestyle. We congratulate CrossFit on creating excellent events and a movement that's building a community around fitness."
Since its inception in 1997, "SportsTravel" magazine has served the sports-related event industry, recognizing those who organize and manage sporting events. Among other winners in various categories are the 2012 Ryder Cup, the 2013 NBA Finals, the 2012 Olympic Summer Games and the NCAA Women’s College World Series.
“This is a special recognition for CrossFit, the CrossFit Games, and the volunteers, staff and partners that work tirelessly to make our events special,” said Justin Bergh, General Manager of the Games. “Every event that CrossFit produces is challenging because of the secrecy of the events until just before show time. The fact that we're recognized throughout the industry for our execution is really a testament to our community.”
The CrossFit Games have grown exponentially over the last seven years, moving from The Ranch in Aromas, Calif., where friends and family gathered over barbeque and barbells, to the stadium lights of the Home Depot Center, which became the StubHub Center in 2013, in Carson, where 46 of the fittest men and 43 of the fittest women in the world went head to head to claim the title in 2012.
History was made that year, as two repeat champions were crowned. Rich Froning Jr. of Cookeville, Tenn., took the men’s title for the second year running and Annie Thorisdottir of Reykjavík, Iceland, reclaimed her title as Fittest Woman on Earth.
The competition ranged from a Marine base miles away from the main venue, to the hot track at the Home Depot Center and nighttime challenges beneath the lights of a tennis stadium.
It takes a "Herculean effort” to pull this thing off, Bergh said.
“We do things fast and right. We plan for the unknown. Most important, I think, is that we're all striving for excellence and we're willing to do whatever it takes to make that happen,” Bergh said. “It's a cool feeling to have people from outside our community take notice of that."
The 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games had more than 600 volunteers contribute to its success through the week. There were dozens of athletes, multiple venues, never-before-seen equipment, never-before-performed events, and all of it spanning multiple days, with live webcasts, broadcasts and real-time reporting in print and multiple social media platforms.
“I've worked on a lot of events, and a lot that claim they have the best volunteers in the world. And I think they really believe that,” Bergh said. “But I also know that when some of those same people come to our events, they are completely blown away by the way our people work, communicate with each other and just plain have fun. We have the best, and fittest, people in the world. You can't beat that.”
While the award is a great honor, Bergh said CrossFit will continue to keep the big picture in mind.
“It's great to win awards, and we're proud of this honor, but that's not what we focus on,” he explained. “We go to work each day to make the Games better than they've ever been.”
Updated Nov. 8, 2013--The StubHub Center is the current name of the former Home Depot Center, as of June 1, 2013. Since the award given was for the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games, the article was updated to clarify this point.
Updated Nov. 11, 2013--Added a quote from Timothy Schneider, publisher of "SportsTravel" magazine.