Will Mat Fraser be the 2016 CrossFit Champ?
After day 2 of the CrossFit regionals it became pretty clear that nothing is set in stone. Every year there is some kind of upset and 2016 is no different. Just looking at how Sam Briggs clawed her way back makes you think twice about making any predictions. But there was one performance that really stood out from the rest, and it has to be Mat Fraser.
Mat Fraser, the prospect.
Mat Fraser took 1st place in the first 4 events, struggled a little in event 5 and managed to end 6th, only to come back with a boom in event 6 and 7. There is no denying that this guy is a focused machine who is determined on winning the Open. He finished the regionals with a very intimidating 670 points, also a new high score, although he didn’t see it playing out that way. In fact, he told friends and family that he wasn’t really confident that he would do so well. Despite the hard efforts from Larouche, Vellner and Hendel, it seemed pretty one-sided for the most part.
In terms of points the only guys who got close to Fraser were Fikowski (West) with 623, Gudmundsson (Meridian) with 618 and Ben Smith (Atlantic) with 618. However, a guy to look out for is Scott Panchik. He finished first in the Central region with 582 points, but he might just cause an upset at the Open. A name that should also scare Fraser is Gudmundsson, because he has silenced all doubts whether he has the power to pull through. But is Fraser’s great finish in the regionals enough to take him to the top?
On the women’s side there is more than just a little bit of stiff competition. Sam Briggs left all her fans with goosebumps after starting day 1 with an uneven performance, only to come back on day 2 to prove why she is dangerous. But she wasn’t the only one that impressed the crowds. Emily Bridgers comfortably took the first place at the Atlantic regionals while finishing 1st place in no less than three events.
Katrin Tanja Davidsdottir
Katrin Tanja Davidsdottir also did well, and what can be said about Kara Webb who basically killed every event she took on? However, the focus seems to be on the winners of the Meridian regionals, because the competition is tighter than ever. Ragnheiður Sara Sigmundsdottir took first place with an impressive 650 points and Annie Thorisdottir finished dead on her heels with 640.
But to get back to the main question at hand, will Fraser’s impressive start be enough to carry him through? With all the new names in the mix and other top contenders only getting stronger, such as Gudmundsson.
Will there be an upset for the CrossFit games in 2016? At the moment the odds are in favor of Fraser, but a lot can happen in a month’s time.