September 26, 2014
Introducing Team USA
By CrossFit
One of four teams competing at the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Invitational, presented by HGST. 
One of four teams competing at the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Invitational, presented by HGST. 

Team USA looks a lot like Rogue Fitness Black minus Briggs.
 

The 2014 Reebok CrossFit Invitational, presented by HGST will be held at the SAP Center in San Jose, California on November 9.

Team USA, Team Europe, Team Canada, and Team Australia will compete in back-to-back events during the two-hour competition. With the release of Team USA, all four CrossFit Invitational teams are now known.

This year, Team USA looks a lot like Rogue Fitness Black but with Emily Bridgers stepping in for British athlete Sam Briggs.

Rich froning

The four-time CrossFit Games champion needs little introduction. Suffice it to say he’s exceptionally fit, and very good at winning.

CrossFit Games Record
2010 - 2nd
2011 - 1st
2012 - 1st
2013 - 1st
2014 - 1st

However, so far, his win, win, win no matter what record has applied only to individual competition. Out of the four CrossFit team competitions Froning has competed in over the years, his team has won once.

Team Competition Record
2011 Central East Regional Team Competition -  8th (CrossFit Faith)
2012 CrossFit Invitational - Won
2013 CrossFit Invitational - Lost
2014 CrossFit Team Series - 3rd (After two weeks of competition.)

Although the CrossFit Team Series has yet to reach its third and final competition, the current standings call into question whether there’s a key difference between the best individual competitors and the best team competitors.

Miranda Oldroyd weighed in on the Update show, stating top individual competitors know how to pace, whereas top team competitors know how to give everything for a short sprint before allowing their teammate to step in.

“When I see these athletes (Khalipa, Froning, Briggs and Foucher of Rogue Fitness Black) I think of athletes that win at the CrossFit Games because they’re slow and steady, they know how to pick a pace, stick with it, and just continue to move," Oldroyd said on the show. "When you see Rich Froning moving, he never looks like he’s going super fast. And I think slow and steady doesn’t win this race. On a team … you’ve got to go 100 percent all out for two to three minutes, then get out of the way.”  

Froning is incredibly competitive, and good at addressing his weaknesses. The question is, will Froning be able to shift gears into the team competitor mindset before the fast-approaching CrossFit Invitational?

jason khalipa

Like Froning, Khalipa recently announced his retirement from individual competition and his plans to shift to team.

Learning to go all out shouldn’t be hard for Khalipa. After all, in the early days, Khalipa was famous for putting the pedal to the metal and not letting up until things started to fall apart. Just think of his collapse near the finish line after the 7-km run through the hills in Aromas, California, or his desperate attempt to catch an unbalanced 135-lb. snatch on the first-ever Amanda that caused him to run to the outskirts of the competition floor in 2010.

Khalipa is one of three seven-time CrossFit Games competitors (in an 8-year old sport), and during that time he has consistently proven he is one of the best. He has finished in the top 10 six times, and taken every spot on the podium once.

CrossFit Games Record
2008 - 1st
2009 - 5th
2010 - 16th
2011 - 7th
2012 - 5th
2013 - 2nd
2014 - 3rd

julie Foucher

The Cleveland Clinic Medical School student has never finished outside of the top five at the CrossFit Games. After taking off the 2013 Reebok CrossFit Games season in order to focus on her studies, Foucher returned to competition with an incredible push for the top spot on the CrossFit Games podium.

In July, we saw an athlete who was far stronger than in past years (231-lb. overhead squat) and capable of handling gymnastics movements with a poise rarely seen in CrossFit workouts thanks to coaching help from legendary gymnast Dominique Moceanu.

Foucher has talked about giving another couple tries for the title Fittest on Earth, and her intention to use this time to the fullest.

She is not new to the particular challenges of the CrossFit Invitational. In 2012, Foucher and the rest of Team USA went on to beat Team Europe 20 to 6.

CrossFit Games Record
2010 - 5th
2011 - 5th
2012 - 2nd
2013 - Absent for medical school
2014 - 3rd

emily bridgers

Bridgers spent three years at the regional level before she qualified for the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games.

This year, she has been on a tear with a first-place finish at the South East Regional (ahead of the region’s longtime champion Talayna Fortunato) and a sixth-place finish at the CrossFit Games.

Bridgers is also on the currently second-ranked team in the CrossFit Team Series, Team Reebok East. Over the last two competitions, she has proven to be a key team member with exceptional performances on Event 2 (4:06), Event 7 (2:20), and Event 8 (185 lb.). 

CrossFit Games Record
2014 - 6th

coach becca voigt

Seven-time CrossFit Games competitor and 2014 Spirit of the Games recipient Becca Voigt will serve as the captain for Team USA. Voigt is not new to the challenges of the CrossFit Invitational. She competed in the inaugural event in 2012.