Rich Froning may no longer be competing as an individual, but based on the evidence of last Thursday’s Open announcement, one might expect to see him at the Games once again this summer at the head of his new team: CrossFit Mayhem Freedom. That’s right—as of last week, Rich Froning is registered as a team competitor for the first time in a CrossFit Games season.
So what do we know about this squad? Let’s take a look at the Open Team Roster—available on games.crossfit.com.
Four-time CrossFit Games champion (2011, 2012,2013,2014)
Four-time CrossFit Open winner (2011,2012,2013,2014)
Two-time CrossFit Invitational winner (2012,2014)
Three-time CrossFit Games individual competitor (2009, 2010, 2014)
Three-time CrossFit Games team competitor with CrossFit New England (2011 Champions, 2012, 2013—2nd)
Finished 44th worldwide in 2014 Open
Two-time Central East Regional competitor (2013-9th, 2014-20th)
Finished 171st worldwide in 2014 Open
Four-time South East Regional competitor (2011-19th, 2012-35th, 2013-23rd, 2014-13th)
Finished 468th worldwide in 2014 Open
Competed with CrossFit Mayhem at 2013 CrossFit Games (finished 27th)
Finished 4738th worldwide in 2014 Open
Competed at 2013 Central East Regional (finished 17th)
Finished 178th worldwide in 2014 Open
Aside from Froning, the other big name on the team is six-time Games athlete James Hobart. Hobart finished 21st at the Games last summer. The other four members of CrossFit Mayhem Freedom have some Regional experience, but it’s hard to estimate what kind of success the team will have in this year’s CrossFit season. To compare, let’s look at how the athletes of 2014’s Team Champions—CrossFit Invictus—performed during last year’s Open. Below is a chart depicting the roster of Invictus’ 2014 squad, as well as their scores for each Open workout.
|CrossFit Invictus||14.1||14.2||14.3||14.4||14.5||Final 2014 Open Standing|
|Melissa Hurley||372||193||168||182||11:35||409th 3909 points|
|Total points: 27,794|
Now, lets look at the scores for the same workouts from the current CrossFit Mayhem Freedom team.
|CrossFit Mayhem Freedom||14.1||14.2||14.3||14.4||14.5||Final 2014 Open Standing|
On paper, CrossFit Invictus has the edge on Mayhem Freedom. However, this is primarily due to Lauren Neal’s high score during last year’s Open. In fact, her final score was higher than the entire Invictus team combined. Remove that score, and it’s a much different story. However, numbers don’t tell the entire story; Neal is in fact a valuable competitor. She has competed at the Games before (as a member of CrossFit Mayhem in 2013), and anyone who has earned a trip to Carson is worthy of our respect.Now, lets look at the scores for the same workouts from the current CrossFit Mayhem Freedom team.
Granted, we have to keep in mind that we are comparing the fittest team from 2014 against a group of individuals who weren’t competing as a team last year. But what the numbers do reveal is that one person can make a difference. Indeed, that one person may be Rich Froning. The fact that Froning has won every single Open since 2011 should catapult Mayhem Freedom up the Central East leaderboard, as he should post an elite score for every workout. Add in quality scores from James Hobart and some solid numbers from the rest of the team, and CrossFit Mayhem Freedom may have enough to send them on to the Central Regional on the weekend of May 29th. However, only the top 15 teams from each U.S. region will advance to the Regional. At the time of publication, CrossFit Mayhem Freedom sits in 169th place, some way off that goal.
Though it’s still early in the Open, one can start to wonder: will Rich Froning be able to carry his team on to Regionals? Will we see the champ compete once more at the Games this summer?
Only time will tell!
Photo courtesy of Reebok