Kyle Kasperbauer and Alexandra LaChance lead the competition heading into the final day of the regional.
There have been a few tremors in Chicago.
While the Windy City is far from any fault line, the shifts on the North Central Leaderboard can be felt throughout the region.
Five-time CrossFit Games competitor Stacie Tovar sits in ninth place at the end of the second day of competition, 17 points outside of third place. With only two events remaining tomorrow, she will need to put in exceptional performances--and see a couple unfortunate performances by the women ahead of her on the Leaderboard--to close the gap and return to Carson, Calif.
Tovar isn’t the only one in an unusual place. Two-time North Central Regional champion Elisabeth Akinwale sits in second place entering the final day of competition. She’s sandwiched between two new names in the women’s competition, Alexandra LaChance and Katelyn Busacker.
With two event wins, Kasperbauer climbed from fifth place overall to the lead, while Alex Nettey dropped to third. The 18th-ranked man at the 2013 North Central Regional, Jacob Heppner, is tied in the point totals with Kasperbauer but sits in second place overall after the tiebreak.
The triplet of strict handstand push-ups, 125-lb. front squats and bar-facing burpees seemed to favor the smaller athletes.
In the first heat, 4-foot 11-inch tall competitor Megan John finished the work in just 12:02. John was able to pull away from the others with quick rounds of strict handstand push-ups. While most of the other women struggled, doing singles, John strung together several reps in a row.
Five-foot 2-inch tall competitor Kelley Jackson finished the work faster than John to take the event win with a time of 11:17.
Jackson said the key to her success in Event 4 was executing her strategy of pacing herself on the handstand push-ups. She practiced it prior to the regional and consistently finished in the 11-minute range, she said.
“I have a tendency to have a plan and then get out there and just go. And that cost me last night in Nasty Girls (V2),” Jackson said. “First time in four years I think I’ve stuck to my game plan, so I’m happy with that. You never know how you’re going to do when you get out there against the girls.”
The only exception to the rule in the Top 3 was 5-foot 5-inch Stacie Tovar. After a rough start to the weekend, Tovar earned a third place finish on Event 4 with a time of 12:32.
The first- and third-ranked women in the overall standings, LaChance and Busacker, rounded out the top 5 on Event 4.
Akinwale was slow but steady. Finishing in 16:47, she dropped to 11th place on the event.
Event 4 Results
1. Kelley Jackson (11:17)
2. Megan John (12:02)
3. Stacie Tovar (12:33)
4. Alexandra LaChance (12:41)
5. Katelyn Busacker (12:55)
The legless rope climbs were a merciless test of upper-body and grip strength. Ten rounds of legless rope climbs and 200-foot sprints proved too much for many of the competitors.
But not Akinwale.
“I’m really excited for a sprint,” Akinwale said before Event 5.
She wasn’t joking. Akinwale maintained a fast pace through the 10 rounds of sprints and legless rope climbs.
View the North Central Regional in Photos