March 12, 2012
Week Three in Review: Africa
By Imtiaz Desai

The names at the top of the Leaderboard were still familiar in the Africa Region.

After the no frills burpee challenge of workout 12.1, and the technical, but heavy 12.2 snatch workout, workout 12.3 saw the prescription of a class CrossFit triplet. The longer time domain and high volume of overhead work in this workout was sure to have had “big engine” athletes such as Danie Du Preez, Jason Smith and Rika Diedericks, rubbing their hands in anticipation of establishing themselves atop the Leaderboard before the final two rounds. The names at the top of the Leaderboard at the close of 12.3 were still familiar.

What a difference a year makes. Last year’s female Regional winner, Mona Pretorius, was largely an unknown, with a few months of CrossFit experience. Her Olympic weightlifting background most certainly gave her a huge advantage, but her win didn’t say much for the depth of competition in the women’s division. Fast-forward to the third workout of this year’s open, and the competition at the top of the women’s board is hot.

After not featuring highly in the first two workouts, Lynda Piper-Roche of Cape CrossFit came in 3rd, which leaves her in 10th place going in to the final two rounds. After being soundly beaten by Rika Diedericks in Workout 12.3, Wilna Appel came back in a huge effort to equal Rika’s 324 repetitions in 12.3! Both ladies therefore remain in 1st place going in to Workout 12.4. Ellie Hagopian, Lorinda van Loggerenberg and Lauren Guibert round out the top five women overall. Guibert placed 3rd at last year’s Regional qualifier.

Jason Smith and Danie du Preez have had many a tussle at this level of competition. The format of workout 12.3 played to the strengths of both athletes, each of whom are known for their massive overhead strength and large work capacities. Danie came in second with 379 repetitions, edging Jason out by just four repetitions. However, they were both surprisingly beaten by the much smaller frame of Gian Smit who knocked up a total of 391 repetitions. Read up on Gian in the Africa Region’s scouting report, and look out for him going forward.

David Levey remains in 1st place at the close of Week 3. He is still largely an unknown, but given that he is 12 points clear of 2nd place with just two events left, he has raised more than a few eyebrows. Aside from Nico van der Walt and Frederik Engelbrecht, the top 10 of the men’s Leaderboard looks very familiar.

With two workouts left, will we see any major change in the Leaderboard, or will the current leaders maintain their positions?

*The scores and rankings are unofficial until Tuesdays at 5 p.m., PT.