There was only one event on day two, but it was plenty of work for the athletes. The “4×4” event was an 8-kilometer desert run, split up as a 4K run wearing a weight vest, and turning around to run the 4K back with the weight off their shoulders – literally. The podium standings after the run are:
1. Willy Georges
2. Björgvin Karl Gu∂mundsson
3. Mathew Fraser
1. Samantha Briggs
2. Jamie Greene
3. Karin Frey
2. Team Sweden
3. Cassidy, Jen, Adrian, Lukas
8K Desert Run:
4K w/ 20/14 lbs plate carrier
Starting with the women, endurance expert Sam Briggs started out in front and held the lead until about halfway through the weighted 4K when 25-year-old Mikaela Norman overtook her. Norman would hold on to the lead, with Briggs finishing nearly two minutes behind her, but maintaining her overall lead. UAE’s native Jamie Greene took third place, moving her up a spot on the leaderboard, just behind Briggs.
On the men’s side, American and Central Regionals athlete Brendan Willis took first place, after battling Russia’s Roman Khrennikov who took second place. You may recall that Khrennikov finished first in the 2018 European regional, but was unable to attend the CrossFit Games after he was unable to secure a travel visa. France’s Willy George’s finished in third, enough to shake up the leaderboard and vault him into first place overall. Mat Fraser nearly beat Gu∂mundsson to the finish line, but finished just behind him, finishing eighth in the event, placing him on the leaderboard.
For the team competition, nothing changed on the leaderboard. Team scores were the total combined time of all athletes on the run. Team Sweden took first place, but behind them was Superheroproject, also made up of Swedish athletes out of CrossFit Borgen. Finishing third was Invictus who would remain on top of the overall leaderboard, holding off Invictus X by just over a minute combined time.
Those watching the race, or rewatching for anyone who didn’t feel like staying up that late in the States, may have noticed some funny footwear on the athletes. CrossFit shoes are designed with a lot of ventilation to allow the feet to breathe. It’s great when you’re in the gym or running on pavement – not so great when you’re trudging through sand. Athletes were wearing covers that came up over their shoes and around their ankles to keep the sand out as much as possible over the course of the run.
Alex Anderson Withdraws
Games veteran Alex Anderson withdrew after Day One of competition. Anderson stated on his Instagram page that he threw out his back during the first workout which included kettlebell snatches. We wish him the best in his recovery and hope to see him back chasing the Games later this season.