"I'm very proud to be representing my country so well ... This is my first Regionals and I'm enjoying competing very much." ~Joel Bran
In Latin America, only one woman, man and team is given a spot at the CrossFit Games.
With the weekend coming to an end, the atmosphere at the Coliseum for Day 3 was tense. The day started with a chipper of double-unders, handstand push-ups, toes-to-bars, shoulder-to-overheads with an axle bar and walking lunges.
Event 6 started with three teams tied with 33 points, fighting for third place.
CrossFit Santiago officially held the third-place spot with their win on Event 5 being the deciding tiebreaker, CrossFit Jundiai CrossFit PTY were fourth and fifth, respectively.
CrossFit Jundiai started strong for an early lead while CrossFit 7 Mile fell behind on the handstand push-ups. But after smooth transitions at the toes-to-bars, CrossFit 7 Mile was able to snatch the lead on the shoulder-to-overheads. The defending champions lunged their way to the finish line to take another win with a time of 12:10.
No other team was able to complete Event 6 under the time cap but CrossFit PTY fought through the shoulder-to-overheads and ended with third place. This catapulted them in the overall standings.
Four of PTY’s athletes competed as individuals at last year’s Latin America Regional, but decided to join forces and compete as a team in 2013.
“Ani Wieselmann (third-place finisher at the 2012 Latin America Regional) came up with the idea to train as a team right after last year’s Regionals. Personally, it’s the first time in my life I’ve been on a team. As a professional surfer, I’ve competed and trained alone my entire life so it has been really fun and motivating to be part of a team,” teammate Nicole Perez says.
Although first and second place are virtually unchangeable, the race for that coveted third spot on the podium is open and Event 7 should bring some great heat.
1. CrossFit 7 Mile (12:10)
2. CrossFit SP (15:06)
3. Reebok CrossFit PTY (15:07)
1. CrossFit 7 Mile (7)
2. CrossFit SP (27)
3. CrossFit PTY (36)
Event 6 proved to be a nail biter when the women found themselves struggling with their handstand push-ups. In the final heat, Antonelli Nicole proved to be very efficient at the movement and pulled ahead of the pack, landing first on the toes-to-bars.
Tarasa Barnett and Solange Jean-Francois Mon followed, but by that point, Nicole had started her walking lunges and built a sizeable lead. She finished first and won Event 6 with a time of 12:59.
Barnett and Jean-Francois Mon were the only two other athletes who successfully completed Event 6 with times of 13:41 and 14:54, respectively.
Nicole was very excited about her win.
"I really didn't have any expectations to win this event. I thought I should do what I do best, the best way that I could. I noticed that I had finished the handstand push-ups way ahead of the other athletes, then I realized that I actually had a chance to win the event. I pushed myself as hard as I could. It was very exciting and I'll never forget this moment,” Nicole says.
Courtney Modecki who battled with the handstand push-ups, lost some ground and finished Event 6 in seventh place. Now, coming into Event 7, only one point separates Modecki and Barnett in their fight for the desired number one spot and single golden ticket to the CrossFit Games.
The battle for first place has never been this close. In the past, by Day 2, the only eligible woman to win has been Barnett.
1. Antonelli Nicole (12:59)
2. Tarasa Barnett (13:41)
3. Solange Jean-Francois Mon (14:54)
1. Courtney Modecki (13)
2. Tarasa Barnett (14)
3. Solange Jean-Francois Mon (27)
Orlando Trejo started Day 3 sitting in first place with a comfortable 15-point lead over Conor Murphy.
Early in the event, Joel Bran quickly kipped through the handstand push-ups and toes-to-bars and found himself with a big lead over the competition. The former Olympic weightlifter lunged over the finish line almost three minutes before any other competitor.
"I feel great,” Bran said after the event. “I felt from the beginning that this was my event. I was worried about the handstand push-ups but I ended up finishing that first. Although my plan was to complete the lunges unbroken, I wasn't able to."
Originally from Guatemala, Bran adds: "I'm very proud to be representing my country so well. It is a dangerous country and I am glad to show that practicing a sport is better than being out on the streets. This is my first Regionals and I'm enjoying competing very much."
Murphy finished the event second with a time of 13:07 and Trejo third with a time of 13:40. With one event left and a 14-point lead over second-placed Murphy, Trejo is virtually the winner of this year's Regional and is close to defending his title and securing his ticket to Carson, Calif., again.
1. Joel Bran (10:08)
2. Conor Murphy (13:07)
3. Orlando Trejo (13:40)
1. Orlando Trejo (27)
2. Conor Murphy (41)
3. Joel Bran (48)