Day 2 in the Dirty South began with long lines as spectators arrived early to get the best seats inside the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena.
"I'm excited to see how the athletes handle all the strict handstand push-ups,” said Josh Jeffrey of Columbia, South Carolina. “I think that's going to be interesting, especially the individuals. That's a pretty high number, and I look forward to seeing how they handle the intensity.”
Warnella Wilder from Hinesville, Georgia, is here for her first regional experience.
"I couldn't be at a better place for my birthday!” she said.
After Day 1 of high skills and time constraints, teams came ready to grind out Day 2’s events. In contrast to the quiet, intense atmosphere of yesterday, teams stormed the floor with chest bumps and high fives, creating energy in the room that was contagious.
Starting the day with heavy thrusters and rope climbs, the women were first in Event 4. Only one team member was allowed to work at a time to complete the required reps, with substitutions coming in at any time. The twist on the event was that if the barbell touched the ground before all of the reps were completed, the team’s rep count went back to zero. In addition, each athlete was required to do at least one rep of the movements. The men immediately followed the women in Event 5.
In the first heat of women, the thrusters proved to be a challenge for Reebok CrossFit Miami Beach when the team dropped the bar and had to restart its set of 30. The women were still able to tie for fifth place on the event with a time of 9:39.
All eyes were on the women of Mako CrossFit as one of their ladies, Frankie Brown, took the floor with a cast on her arm.
"I broke my hand yesterday at the end of the handstand walk,” Brown said. “It was a stupid, rookie error. I got mad and punched the floor after (the event). I could do at least one thruster so that we could at least get 50 reps, and I attempted to do a rope climb. I feel bad I messed it up for everybody, but it's a learning experience, and we're here, and we'll definitely be back next year.”
The men of CrossFit Ragnarok made short work of the rope climbs and showed off doing all but the last set of rope climbs legless and unbroken. They finished ninth with a time of 8:21.
The final heat was a tight race.
"We love workouts like that because they have a lot of transition which forces us to have great communication as a team. It was a lot of fun," said Lindsay Bourdon of CrossFit Adrenaline.
CrossFit Adrenaline’s women finished in 8:58, taking first in their event, followed by CrossFit Atlanta and CrossFit Unmatched.
On the men’s side, Team HustleHard took first with a time of 7:16. CrossFit Atlanta finished 12 seconds behind for second, and CrossFit Bound finished in third.
CrossFit HardCore was in second place overall at the end of Events 4 and 5. Team member Elizabeth Parry said the team was pleased with their performance.
"We went out there, we did what we wanted to and we beat what we did in practice," Parry said.
Team Event 4 Results
1. CrossFit Adrenaline (8:58)
2. CrossFit Atlanta (9:14)
3. CrossFit Unmatched (9:15)
Team Event 5 Results
1. Team HustleHard (7:16)
2. CrossFit Atlanta (7:28)
3. CrossFit Bound (8:11)
Teams finished out the day with a triplet of strict handstand push-ups, hang power cleans and burpees.
Kipping handstand push-ups were not allowed. Adding to the challenge, each competitor only received three failed attempts on the handstand push-ups, with the penalty being the time cap.
The strict handstand push-up requirement slowed the teams down considerably, and only two teams were able to finish the event within the 21-minute time cap.
In Heat 2, the Carolina CrossFit Silverbacks used an unusual method to chip away at the burpees, hitting the ground with their forearms instead of their hands.
"I wanted to save my triceps for the (handstand) push-ups so I just dropped to the ground with my arms tucked in and used my knees to get back up. It helped with the handstands for sure because my arms didn't fatigue,” Melissa Murphy said. (Teammate Matt Swartz), was a former wrestler and taught us to do that. We practiced burpees that way."
In the final heat of the day, a team that appeared invincible found its weakness. CrossFit Adrenaline member T.J. Menerey struggled with the strict handstand push-ups, causing the team to fall considerably behind.
"It didn't go so well for me, but the team did great," Menerey said. "I just hit a wall out there and tried to go a little too quick too many times, and it didn't work out. Thank God our girls are really good to make up for us sometimes."
"I think that if you're in that first-place spot, you actually need to make sure you're not pulling back and still doing everything you should be doing,” Lindsay Bourdon said. “But at the same time, you still have to play it a little conservatively and not do anything too crazy to miss a rep.”
Despite the setback, the women were able to make up for lost ground with the help of Bourdon who flew through the strict handstand push-ups. The team still fell short of meeting the time cap and finished the event in third place with a time of 21:08. They continue to hold onto first place overall.
Leah Polaski of CrossFit Atlanta burned through the handstand push-ups unbroken, helping her team across the finish line with the fastest time of the day at 17:49.
"We are feeling good. We are happy with where we placed," Polaski said. "We were happy to get Day 1 out of the way. We thought that it would be our weakest day in terms of the (events) so we came into this (event) just really focusing on the fast rep scheme and fast transition, and we were able to deliver."
Event 6 pushed CrossFit Atlanta into third place overall at the end of the day.
"We feel great,” Mike Giardina said. “I mean, the game plan went well. We needed it because we're hanging out in fourth by a couple points, so we'll see how that shuffle turns around going into tomorrow and the last two workouts."
CrossFit Hardcore finished the event in second place with a time of 19:23 and finished the day in second place overall.
Team Event 6 Results
1. CrossFit Atlanta (17:49)
2. CrossFit Hardcore (19:23)
3. CrossFit Adrenaline (21:08)
1. CrossFit Adrenaline (14)
2. CrossFit HardCore (21)
3. CrossFit Atlanta (28)
4. Team HustleHard (36)
5. CrossFit Unmatched (36)
6. CrossFit Bound (40)
7. Peak 360 CrossFit (65)
8. CrossFit 305 (70)
9. CrossFit Mobile Midtown (73)
10. Iron Tribe 205 (74)