Rocklin CrossFit Honeybadgers never left any doubt. They started the competition in first place and stayed there the entire weekend, taking first at the NorCal Regional. They’ll be returning to the CrossFit Games for the fifth time.
CrossFit 808 took second place, and NorCal CrossFit took third place, finishing just three points ahead of fourth-placed Caffeine and Kilos.
“I've been trying to do this on my own for years, and I’ve come close a lot,” said Miranda Oldroyd of NorCal CrossFit. “I told these guys a couple months ago, when we met for the first time as a team, just how much it meant to me. I knew we were going to be able to do it with this group. I was crying then, and I'm crying now. I'm so excited."
Faster is not always better.
Two of the male-female partners on the Diablo CrossFit Anejo team were rushing through their deadlifts, when a coach from the sidelines yelled out, “Slow down!”
In Event 7, three partners of two worked their way through a row, double-unders, deadlifts (with one partner holding the barbell while the other completed reps), and toes-to-bars (with one person performing five reps while the other hung from the bar). Pairs could not move forward until the pair ahead of them reached the next station.
This event is a pacing game until the 50 toes-to-bars at the end. If their grip holds out, it’s a five-at-a-time sprint for the final pair of athletes.
CrossFit 808 won the event with a time of 15:14, but Diablo CrossFit Anejo, with their slow and steady approach, came in second, passing up NorCal CrossFit, who were in second for most of the event.
It was a tight race for third place between Caffeine and Kilos and NorCal CrossFit. Caffeine and Kilos moved to their final set of toes-to-bars at the same time as NorCal's married pair, Pat and Tamaryn Barber. NorCal completed four consecutive sets of toes-to-bars, with neither Barber releasing the bar, while the Caffeine and Kilos duo completed sets of five, dropping to rest after each set.
During the final 10 reps, NorCal went to singles while Caffeine and Kilos stayed consistent with five. Each team dropped from the bar for a sprint to the finish line, with Caffeine and Kilos finishing in 15:50, ahead of NorCal by one second.
Going into Event 7, only one point separated fourth-placed Caffeine and Kilos from third-placed NorCal CrossFit.
“This is a sport, and we're excited about that win (third place in Event 7),” said Charlie Zamora of Caffeine and Kilos.
However, he knows there’s more work to do.
“We know there's still one more workout, " he said.
CrossFit 808 was comfortably in second place going into the final event.
“We don’t want to count our chickens before they hatch, but there’s only one more event, and we really like that last one,” said Elyse Umeda of CrossFit 808.
A sweaty Pat Barber, fresh off the floor with Team NorCal, overheard her and shouted, “Wait ‘til the end!”
Event 7 Results
1. CrossFit 808 (15:14)
2. Diablo CrossFit Anejo (15:28)
3. Caffeine and Kilos (15:50)
They didn’t need to win Event 8 to stay in the top three, but CrossFit 808 did anyway. Not only did they win, they set an event record with a time of 9:40.
The overhead squats in this event are deceptive. Although there are only seven of them, the 49 pull-ups fatigue the shoulders and cause many athletes to stall out, struggling to get below parallel with the bar overhead.
Showing off their well-rounded team, the athletes of CrossFit 808 had no problem finishing the work. Their athletes worked smoothly through their reps, with Umeda finishing up the overhead squats, clinching the win for her team.
“We did it. Event record!” Umeda said after the event. “Out there you never really know. We knew we took first, but then we heard the announcer say it was the event record by a minute and that was even better.”
“We’re so excited for the Games,” she said. “Ready for a little break first, though!”
Rocklin CrossFit Honeybadgers came in second, holding onto their first-place spot overall.
“We felt pretty confident going into (the regional competition),” said Gary Baron of Rocklin CrossFit Honeybadgers. “We were just staying steady, consistent, conservative on the snatch workout,” he said.
“We capitalized on other team’s mistakes and it kept us at the top for the weekend. Stellar weekend for us,” he said.
Caffeine and Kilos went into the event trying to make their way into third place. To do so, they’d have to beat NorCal CrossFit. Caffeine and Kilos team took an early lead when their second male athlete, Travis McRoberts, completed his overhead squats unbroken and sprinted to the finish.
Then the women took over. NorCal’s second female athlete worked quickly through her pull-ups and was onto the overhead squats while Caffeine and Kilo’s second female athlete, Sara McRoberts, struggled with her pull-ups, breaking them into smaller sets of threes and fours. Caffeine and Kilos' Buddy Hitchcock went unbroken on his pull-ups, then snatched the barbell and completed his overhead squats unbroken. It wasn’t enough to catch up to NorCal, who finished in third with a time of 11:27. Running across the line to join her team, Oldroyd jumped into the waiting arms of Pat Barber, wrapping her legs around him in a full-body hug.
Oldroyd, a perennial regional competitor, is finally going to the Games. Barber has competed at the Games several times as an individual; this is his first time going as part of this team.
“I'm going to the Games as part of a team of people I like as people, so it's going to be great,” Barber said.
Event 8 Results
1. CrossFit 808 (09:40)
2. Rocklin CrossFit Honeybadgers (10:21)
3. NorCal CrossFit (11:27)
1. (18) Rocklin CrossFit Honeybadgers
2. (24) CrossFit 808
3. (38) NorCal CrossFit