August 22, 2011
Does experience count for anything at the CrossFit Games? Hilary Achauer explores how rookies Jenny LaBaw and Brick CrossFit came out of nowhere and stormed their way into the top 10.
This year’s CrossFit Games included some superhuman performances and unexpected workouts—from ocean swimming to a softball throw for distance—but the first-place finishers were not surprising. In many eyes, Rich Froning Jr., Annie Thorisdottir and CrossFit New England were the favorites to win from the beginning.
This doesn’t mean the weekend wasn’t without its surprises.
While sixth-place female finisher Jenny LaBaw took a Level 1 Seminar in January 2010, she only started CrossFit training herself in January 2011. She learned Olympic lifting during the Reebok CrossFit Games Open, and she did 70 percent of her Games training by herself, with no coach or training partner.
Nine-month-old Brick CrossFit finished fifth overall with a team they put together during the Open. Only two of their teammates had ever competed in CrossFit before, and they were one of the smallest teams—in weight and stature—in the competition.