In 2012, Team SPC CrossFit took second place behind Hacks Pack UTE. This year, there will be no rematch.
As the Open draws to a climactic close and athletes make difficult decisions, Team SPC CrossFit has decided to disband and compete individually. It’s not that they won't field a team should the option arise at the Central East Regional and beyond, it’s that the original team, the one who scored five top-10 finishes at the CrossFit Games last year, won’t be the same.
“Once the team was looking weaker, we decided to go (as) individuals,” 21-year-old team member, Julianna Broadbent, says.
Courtney Baliman, Craig Charton, Sam Heydlauff, Brett Sepi, Joseph Weigel, Danielle Sidell and Kyle Kline made up the powerhouse from the Central East in 2012. Together, the team managed a first place Open victory within their Region. They turned that success into a worldwide victory at Regionals. Even so, after the Games ended, the team began to change.
The first to go was 2011 individual Games competitor made team member, Joe Weigel. The 23-year-old firefighter now trains at CrossFit Cadre and says he had always planned to make CrossFit a solo affair. Going into the final week of the Open, Weigel sits ninth in the Central East.
Danielle Sidell was the second mutiny. And not by choice, by duty. The 24-year-old former track athlete left Akron, Ohio, for Fort Lee, an Army base in Virginia. But before she decided to serve, she had other plans.
“After the Games last year, me and Danielle sat down and talked,” Broadbent says. “Stay on the team for one more year.”
When Sidell officially transplanted, however, the team knew competing wasn’t going to be quite as they remembered it, and they opted for a more singular 2013 season.
“It was very emotional at first,” Broadbent says. “It happened the first weekend of the Open so we all redid it (13.1).”
Even though Broadbent says she’s nervous, she’s ready and prepared for the change.
“I had a reality check: Am I really ready to go individual?” she says.
Her questions eventually gave way and she began to reel in the season after the first two Open workouts where she scored 175 reps on 13.1, and 300 reps on 13.2, leaving her in 98th place. Now, after first place in the region on 13.3 with 273 reps, and a 101-rep delivery on 13.4, she sits tied for 48th place before the fifth and final throwdown.
And even though she’s on the cusp of the cut and her team is no more, she remains confident after the release of 13.5.
“Things other people are bad at, I’m good at,” she says.