Sunshine and packed stands greeted athletes as they took the field on the last day of competition in the North East. At the end of the day, we’ll know which three teams, men and women will receive invites to the 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games.
The final day started off with another brutal chipper of double-unders, handstand push-ups, toes-to-bars, shoulder-to-overhead with an axle and walking lunges with axle in front rack.
First introduced to competitors at the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games, the thick, non-spinning axle was a challenge for many.
Still, Rachel Martinez and James Hobart of CFNE Team A put on a clinic, crossing the finish line over three minutes ahead of any other team and besting the previous World Record for Event 6 by over a minute.
“In practice we were just under eight minutes, so we came out here trying to beat that,” Hobart says. “I guess you could say we were pretty happy with how things went. We practiced with a different brand of axle, but no matter if it’s a Rogue axle or from somewhere else, it’s going to suck. The axle got pretty slippery at the end.”
For the men, it all came down to the lunges.
In Heat 3, training partners Joe Silvestri and Logan Schecter, both wearing matching-mismatched shoes, went head to head and finished the heat in first and second place.
Silvestri beat Schecter by only a few seconds.
“Of course I knew I’d finish before him!” Silvestri says. “But seriously, we were both faster than this in practice, and we were conscious of where the other was throughout, and that helped a lot. We had to keep picking it up.”
For Schecter, the event was decidedly “heavier” than he had practiced. Or rather, he was considerably lighter.
“I was actually in the hospital last night and Wednesday night with a peptic ulcer,” Schecter says. “So I was weighed there and I weighed 154 pounds, and I haven’t really eaten much in five days. So the axle was at least six pounds over bodyweight.”
The crowd’s excitement was palpable as the men in Heat 4 took the field, and the athletes did not disappoint.
Daniel Tyminski shot ahead early on the handstand push-ups and maintained his lead the whole way, moving steadily through each movement.
“I wanted to go even faster, but I had a strict game plan, and I paced it exactly,” Tyminski says. “I went back after and was giving Christian [Harris] advice on the lunges. I kept telling him to keep upright because that helped me a lot on those.”
Before heading back to cheer Harris on, Tyminski also encouraged Eric Magee to go unbroken on the second half of lunges on his way to a fourth-place finish.
"That was helpful and gave me a push,” former UFC fighter Magee says. “Those lunges sucked."
Also receiving cheers from his competitors was Ian Berger, who crossed the finish line without a second to spare due to a number of no-reps.
“I gave it my best,” Berger says. “I can't be upset."
Tyminski and Austin Malleolo enter the last workout of the weekend tied with 20 points. Magee sits comfortably in third place with 35 points, 15 points ahead of fourth-placed athlete Spencer Hendel.
1. Daniel Tyminski 9:29
2. Mathew Fraser 10:14
3. Craig Kenney 11:10
1. Austin Malleolo (20)
2. Daniel Tyminski (20)
3. Eric Magee (35)
Jennifer Hunter-Marshall was the first woman to complete Event 6 with a decisive lead over other athletes in Heat 3.
“I was aware they were catching up to me on the axle presses, and it forced me to pick it up sooner than I wanted,” Hunter-Marshall says. “I really wanted to do three sets of 10, but after all the handstand push-ups and work this weekend, I couldn’t keep it in sets of 10. If you blow the lead on something like that, it’s your fault, and that kept me going. It’s all strategy at this level. This is my fifth straight year as an individual competitor at Regionals, so the old lady still has some work in her!”
In the final heat, Danielle Horan reached the halfway mark for the lunges on pace to break the previous World Record for Event 6, set earlier today by Katrin Tanja Davidsdottir at 8:31. She dropped the axle partway through the lunges, causing the crowd to go wild urging her to pick it back up.
“Honestly, I don’t hear anything. I keep my eye on his [coach and boyfriend Jade Jenny] pom-pom Where’s Waldo hat, watch his hand signals, and just keep going!”
She finished the workout in 8:55. It wasn’t fast enough for a record, but she did come in over a minute ahead of second-place finisher for the event, Kaleena Ladeairous.
Ladeairous had planned on going unbroken on the lunges, but says her arms were “so fried I couldn’t hold it up any longer.” Ladeairous’ second-place finish was good enough to keep her in third place overall. Stacey Kroon is 15 points behind in fourth place.
Amanda Goodman flew through the double-unders and handstand push-ups portion of Event 6 and finished her shoulder-to-overhead ahead of Ladeairous, but she was overtaken on the lunges.
"I don’t want to say the first part was easy, but if I could move I could gain ground on most of the field," Goodman says. "I wanted to hold on to the bar on the lunges at least half of the way. Of course, I wanted to do better, but I did well and it’s not a loss."
1. Danielle Horan 8:55
2. Kaleena Ladeairous 10:12
3. Amanda Goodman 10:29
1. Danielle Horan (15)
2. Amanda Goodman (17)
3. Kaleena Ladeairous (22)
While some teams were able to perform the workout just as they’d planned, others ran into unexpected trouble.
“The plan was that I’d come out and complete 30 handstand push-ups, then James would do 20,” Rachel Martinez says. “And that’s exactly what we did. Exactly according to plan.”
Keri Ann Koegel of King of Island Park wasn’t so lucky. Her team finished the workout third.
“Our plan went out the window about 10 seconds in,” Koegel says. “The only thing that went as we practiced was toes-to-bars.”
Mike Abgarian, Koegel’s partner for the event, said there were additional frustrations.
“I was no-repped a million times. It definitely didn’t go as planned.”
After Event 6, only one point separates first and second place, Team Dynamix and CFNE Team A. Third-placed CrossFit King of Island Park is 10 points behind, with CrossFit Southie in fourth place and only four points back.
1. CFNE Team A 7:33
2. CrossFit Iron Will 11:04
3. CrossFit King of Island Park 11:41
1. Team Dynamix (18)
2. CFNE Team A (19)
3. CrossFit King of Island Park (29)
Teams and individuals face the final workout this afternoon, a challenging couplet of rope climbs and heavy cleans followed by a sprint.