With so many top athletes moving into the region, as well as many top athletes switching to individual from team, the day started off with an unclear picture of who will excel in this year’s competition.
Many of the top individual contenders for both men and women in this year’s South West Regional were not on the roster in 2013. With so many top athletes moving into the region, as well as many top athletes switching to individual from team, the day started off with an unclear picture of who will excel in this year’s competition.
Fans of Ute CrossFit’s Adrian Conway were disappointed to hear he would not be competing in this year’s regional due to an injury sustained on Tuesday. Fans were still able to cheer on the rest of the stars from Ute CrossFit: Tommy Hackenbruck, Mandi Janowitz and Brennan Fjord.
The day started off testing athletes’ strength, but much like the rest of the weekend, gymnastics would determine who will be on the top of the Leaderboard. For most athletes, the end of the first day was a celebration as they looked forward to the rest of the weekend.
Hackenbruck said he was happy to have Day 1 over with. “I feel great and I am glad Nasty Girls is over with,” he said. “That was one of two events that I was nervous about. Good to check that one off.”
Hang squat snatches and handstand walks seem like two straightforward movements, but any slight mistake could knock an athlete down. Hackenbruck knew this going in, and started his snatches relatively light: 245 lb. He finished with a nice solid 260-lb. lift.
A number of men followed a similar strategy, including Chris Hoppe and Shaun Hazelton, who also finished with 260-lb. snatches.
Matt Hathcock started his lift at 245, as well, and successfully jumped up 15 lb. with each attempt, finishing with a 275 lb. He started the weekend of well with a second-place finish.
Danny Nichols opened with the heaviest weight, 265 lb., with ease. The crowd cheered as he moved on to successfully hang squat snatch 280 lb. The crowd grew even louder as he added more weight for a 300-lb. attempt, which he missed and ditched behind him.
“I started with a light weight I knew I could make, then moved to 280 lb., and just went for it after that,” Nichols said. “I knew I could do it but I pulled a little too hard. I’d done way more than that in practice but it just didn’t happen today.”
The athletes transitioned to Event 2 immediately and the strong man Nichols, quickly stumbled on the handstand walks finishing at just 80 feet, earning him a costly 34 points.
“I felt great after the snatch, but I didn’t do as well as I wanted on the handstand walk, so I just gotta brush it off and move forward,” he said after the event.
Event 1 Results
1. Danny Nichols (280 lb.)
2. Matt Hathcock (275 lb.)
3. Kyle Boyer (260 lb.)
Event 2 Results
1. Lance Castle (365)
2. Chris Spealler (285)
3. Ryan Laframboise (270)
Some competitors may have dreaded this second version of Nasty Girls, but the crowd loved it, roaring with excitement as each heat counted down to start. In Heat 1, as Drew Pollner struggled to the finish the event, the crowd stood on its feet to cheer him on while the rest of the athletes rallied around him.
In all heats, competitors finished their first set of pistols within seconds of each other. In Heat 2, when Hathcock began to slow down in his third round of pistols, Christopher Gartrell was able to break away and head to the rings to take the lead. This paid off and he finished first ahead of Moses Cordova and Hathcock.
“It was in my wheelhouse,” Gartrell said. “I’m good with body-weight movements so I took advantage of that.”
“In the third round, I don’t know, I just couldn’t breathe,” Hathcock said of his experience in Nasty Girls V2. “It went way better in practice so I don’t know what went wrong. The first two rounds might have been a little fast and trying to recover from them was difficult.”
After taking an early and steady lead in Heat 3, Jared Glover of CrossFit 702, finished the event in second behind Patrick Burke who passed him in the last round of cleans.
“I did this workout like five times so I knew what to expect,” Glover said. “We talked about breaking up the early reps, but when I got out there I just went for it. I should have just gone for those last reps. I had fun.”
Burke was able to catch up and bypass Glover, taking a giant leap over his bar onto the finish mat, finishing just two seconds ahead.
“I just kept my same pace the whole time,” Burke said. “It’s just, (Glover) dropped his bar (in the last set of cleans) and I didn’t.”
Heat 4 belonged to CrossFit legend Chris Spealler. He took a huge lead at the start and maintained it throughout.
Chris Hoppe, of Progressive Fitness CrossFit, finished second with a time of 9:08. He hammered out his last set of hang cleans unbroken to pass Spencer Marx for the spot behind Spealler who finished first with a time of 8:05.
Hoppe was pleased with his Event 3 performance.
“I knew I couldn’t win this one, but I couldn’t lose either,” Hoppe said. “I needed to hang with the other guys, I stayed consistent. Consistency is the name of the game this weekend.”
Hackenbruck kept a steady pace, with his height hindering his speed in pistols. He made up for lost time with his muscle-ups and cleans and finished third in his heat and fifth on the event.
Hackenbruck looked forward to Day 2 where he felt the events could cater better to his strengths.
“I’m really excited about the rope climb workout,” he said. “I love it, love it. I can jump halfway up the rope and I am taller with longer arms so it will be a lot of fun.”
Event 3 Results
1. Chris Spealler (8:05)
2. Patrick Burke (8:58)
3. Tommy Hackenbruck (9:28)
The top 10 are only 1-6 points behind each other so each of them will have to make sure there are no mistakes in tomorrow’s performances.
1. Tommy Hackenbruck (15)
2. Chris Hoppe (20)
3. Christian Lucero (24)
4. Kyle Boyer (29)
5. Chris Spealler (31)
6. Lance Castle (37)
7. Patrick Burke (37)
8. Chad Cole (38)
9. Matt Hathcock (39)
10. Shaun Hazelton (40)
Former gymnast Amanda Goodman, who is new to the South West Region, put on a show in Events 1 and 2. On the hang snatch, Goodman appeared cool and collected on all three attempts.
She easily hit her opener at 165 lb. and jumped to a successful 180 lb. Her final attempt at 190 lb. was as smooth as the first two. Moving immediately to Event 2, Goodman showed off her gymnastics skills walking 290 feet with perfect form.
“I was a gymnast for 10 years and as long as I can remember I have wanted to walk on my hands,” she said.
With a background in collegiate and Olympic throwing it wasn’t shocking that Loree Smith from CrossFit SoCo drove the competition in the hang snatch. In the fourth heat, Smith stunned the crowd with a 180-lb. opening lift. Smith easily hit the weight and moved to 195 lb., but failed. On her third attempt, Smith caught 205 lb. in the squat, a weight that would have tied the event record, but she stood up too quickly and couldn’t finish the lift.
“I only really learned the squat snatch within the last year so I’m not 100 percent solid in my technique yet,” Smith said afterward. “So 180 lb. is not necessarily a hard weight but it felt a little iffy today.”
On the women’s side, 10 athletes lifted over 160 lb. snatches, and nine walked at least the full 120-ft. pass, but in the end, Amanda Goodman took 1st in both events, tying with Tennil Reed on the handstand walk.
Event 1 Results
1. Amanda Goodman (190 lb.)
2T. Nikki Carlin (180 lb.)
2T. Loree Smith (180 lb.)
Event 2 Results
1T. Amanda Goodman (290 ft.)
1T. Tennil Reed (290 ft.)
3. Tylinn Rashan (275 ft.)
Event 3 gave athletes their first big chance to climb the Leaderboard. While pistols seemed to be where athletes pulled ahead or fell behind for the men, it was muscle-ups that determined an athlete’s fate for the women.
Across all heats, competitors sprinted out and stayed head-to-head with the first set of pistols, but it was Emmalee Teribery who finished Heat 1 first almost a whole minute ahead of Bobbi Heaney, who took 2nd in the heat.
In Heat 2, Jessica Nathe broke away during the first set of pistols and her lead just kept growing. She did nearly the entire event unbroken except for the very last muscle-up and finished more than three minutes faster than the next finisher.
It wasn’t until Heat 3 that the leaders had competition. Ashley Miller took the lead in the first set of pistols and headed to the rings for muscle-ups with Whitney Cappellucci just behind. Cappellucci’s gymnastics skills paid off and she finished her first set unbroken. Miller struggled with muscle-ups and fell behind, giving Cappellucci the lead.
April Digiannantonio kept a steady pace. Her skills on muscle-ups gave her the lead over Miller in the third round. Digiannantonio was able to bypass Miller and claim the second in the heat, just 18 seconds ahead of Miller.
Mandi Janowitz and Tiffany Hendrickson dominated Heat 4, but others weren’t far behind. Janowitz and Hendrickson were rep-for-rep for the entire event. It was clear both athletes were checking their peripherals.
“You can’t help but see what’s going on next to you,” Hendrickson admitted. “I was aware of where (Janowitz) was but thought, ‘Don’t chase.’ Towards the last round, I felt her back off so that’s when I hit that surge. For the hang cleans, I was determined not to put the bar down.”
Janowitz said she felt the affects of Event 3 immediately.
“Touché to whoever programmed that workout because it is exactly that: nasty,” she said. “The first two rounds feel good but then your forearms start to feel it and you lose hip momentum on the muscle-ups. Having Tiffany in the lane next to me helped to keep me focused and she actually helped pull me though. I’m always glad to have strong competition right next to me.”
Event 3 Results
1. Tiffany Hendrickson (8:12)
2. Mandi Janowitz (8:37)
3. Andrea Ager (9:33)
Like the men, the top 10 women are so close in points that they will have to perform tomorrow with zero mistakes to maintain their position on the Leaderboard.
1. Amanda Goodman (6)
2. Tiffany Hendrickson (11)
3. Tennil Reed (17)
4. Mandi Janowitz (19)
5. Nikki Carlin (21)
6. Andrea Ager (27)
7. Emmalee Teribery (27)
8. April Digiannantonio (27)
9. Andi Turner (29)
10. Bobbi Heaney (35)