It. Has. Arrived. The 2022 CrossFit Games has officially kicked off. In this blog, we’ll do daily recaps of what went down — who dominated, who fell behind, and what the almighty leaderboard is currently telling us.

Day 5

That’s it, folks. Another CrossFit Games is in the books, and while there were a few surprises, we also saw at least one name at the top of the leaderboard that we came to expect.


  1. Tia-Clair Toomey (1158pts)
  2. Mallory O’Brien (1045pts)
  3. Laura Horvath (981pts)


  1. Justin Medeiros (1184pts)
  2. Roman Khrennikov (1157pts)
  3. Ricky Garard (1068pts)

Let’s start with the women. With some of the “worst” performances we’ve seen from her (relative to her history, that is), it was looking like this might be the year that Toomey finally met her match — in 18-year-old O’Brien, last year’s Rookie of the Year. A full two days passed without Toomey capturing an event win. She placed 23rd in the Skill Speed Medley, completely out of character, especially considering last year, she had nine event wins (out of 15 events total) and never finished outside the top six. She did climb back to 1st place around the middle/end of the week, but importantly, O’Brien was never far behind. It would only take one event win for the world to have a new fittest woman.

However, as the events wore on, the gap between the two athletes slowly widened, and even without confirmation, it became safe to say it: Tia was going to grab her sixth 1st-place finish. And that’s exactly what she did, setting yet another record in the world of CrossFit.

Tia somehow makes it looks easy, with further speaks to just how skilled she is. Without a doubt, we are watching one of the greatest athletes of our time. Otherworldly.

O’Brien’s performance is surely not to be dismissed, though. Not only did she keep up with athletes far more experienced than her physically, but she withstood the mental challenges that the Games provides. Impressive, to say the least. And, her career is just beginning. If she stays on this trajectory, it’s only logical that O’Brien will one day stand on top of the podium.

3rd-place finisher Horvath was more of a surprise, mainly because while Toomey and O’Brien were all but a sure bet, the final spot on the podium could’ve gone to a few different athletes, like Danielle Brandon, who ultimately finished in 4th. It was refreshing to see Horvath perform so well, after 2nd-place finishes at the 2018 and 2021 Games.

The men really surprised us. Garard came back with a vengeance, his sights set on taking the gold. And for much of the week, it was looking totally possible — probable, even. His biggest threat, though? Last year’s fittest, Medeiros. Medeiros was out to prove that he wasn’t a flash in the pan. He first made his mark in 2020, giving even Mat Fraser a run for his money and ultimately finishing 3rd. And that’s when we knew that he wasn’t here to play.

The leaderboard did a lot of moving around but at the end of the week, Medeiros got to call himself victorious, while Garard ended up in 3rd.

Which brings us to our next point: Khrennikov, you sneaky man!

Khrennikov consistently sat in 3rd the majority of this week, and it seemed clear that that’s where he would finish. However, his performance in the last three events was solid, with an event win for The Alpaca. Garard, meanwhile, was landing slightly lower on the leaderboard throughout the week, and at the end of it all, Khrennikov was able to pull ahead.

It was an amazing conclusion all around. Medeiros further solidified that he’s a true champion to be taken seriously (as if we didn’t already know), Garard made one hell of a comeback after four years of not competing, and Khrennikov — one of Russia’s more prominent athletes — finally got his time in the spotlight, after missing the 2021 Games due to Visa issues. Well-deserved.

And Tia? What is there to say about Tia? Her athleticism knows no boundaries. O’Brien is definitely someone to keep your eye on. And Horvath’s pure, raw strength is beyond inspiring.

Year after year after year, we find ourselves in absolute awe. Congratulations to ALL of the competitors, regardless of where you finished at the end of this week.

Cheers to another memorable competitive season! Until next time…

Day 4

The fourth day of the 2022 CrossFit Games tested every modality of these competitors: speed, strength, endurance, and perhaps above all else, grit. Without a doubt, sheer exhaustion has set in. But with only one day left, the last thing any of the athletes can do is slow down.

The first event of the day, Rinse ‘N’ Repeat, had the athletes swimming in the pool alternating with the Ski Erg. On the women’s side, Lucy Campbell stole the event win, with seasoned vet Amanda Barnhart and then Laura Horvath on her tail. Roman Khrennikov, proving that he’s a force to be reckoned with, finished 1st on the men’s side, ahead of Dallin Pepper and Jonne Koski — who hasn’t finished near the top since Event 1 — in 3rd.

Swimming at the Games is nothing new, although it certainly isn’t the standard. The majority of the time, the athletes are on dry land. However, putting them in water certainly shows who prepared for the unlikely… and who’s totally out of their element.

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The second event of the day was Hat Trick — three rounds of a sprint followed by wall ball shots and dumbbell snatches (with a two-minute time cap) and four minutes of rest in between. What was interesting here was that from the time the buzzer sounded, you had to move as fast as possible, since the sprint was a huge chance for competitors to gain an advantage. However, the dumbbell snatches were no joke, at 70lbs for the women and 100lbs for the men. If you watched carefully, the no-reps were in heavy attendance. This perhaps put more space between the competitors than the sprint and the wall ball shots.

Ellie Turner nabbed 1st nearly 10 seconds ahead of Mallory O’Brien, who beat Tia-Clair Toomey by a fraction of a second. For the men, Guilherme Malheiros finished 1st with a nice lead of about 16 seconds ahead of Justin Medeiros. Dallin Pepper scored another top finish in 3rd. If you look at the leaderboard for Hat Trick, you’re going to be reminded that the difference between a podium finish and going home empty-handed can be a fraction of a second. That’s how close together some of these competitors finish.

We finished the day with a test of raw strength: Sandbag Ladder. The goal? Lift the heaviest sandbag possible to your shoulder. The weights ranged from 160-250lbs for the women and 240-340lbs for the men. All of the athletes who failed at each weight completed a tiebreak race consisting of three sandbag lifts over a hurdle.

Dani Speegle captured her first event win and did what no other woman could: She successfully hoisted 250lbs onto her shoulder. Jacqueline Dalstrøm came in second with 240lbs, and woman of steel Horvath finished in 3rd with 230. Bear in mind that in many cases, these sandbags were significantly heavier than the athletes themselves. The men’s leaderboard is currently doing a little dancing, but as of right now, it tells us that Nick Mathew and Malheiros tied for 1st with 340lbs, followed by OG Brent Fikowski, also with 340lbs.

With one day left, here are the current standings:


  1. Tia-Clair Toomey
  2. Mallory O’Brien
  3. Danielle Brandon


  1. Justin Medeiros
  2. Ricky Garard
  3. Roman Khrennikov

Although, Toomey didn’t grab any event wins today, she didn’t need them. She’s returned to the top of the leaderboard enough to be comfortably ahead of O’Brien by 92 points. Remember, though, that it could take just one event win to nudge O’Brien to the top, and she’s more than demonstrated this week that she’s capable of it. Emma Lawson is currently one point behind Brandon. So, one final day of competition is more than enough to shake up the women’s leaderboard.

Medeiros climbed back ahead of Garard and is currently 17 points ahead — not enough that Medeiros can stop looking over his shoulder, especially considering Garard has already secured two event wins. While Khrennikov might have a hard time ousting the top two competitors, he’s comfortably sitting in 3rd place 148 points ahead of Jeffrey Adler, who’s currently in 4th.

Unless something crazy happens, we’re probably already looking at our podium finishers for the men. It’s only a matter of who’s ultimately going to secure the gold medal. The women’s leaderboard has a little more uncertainty, although our reigning champ will likely grab yet another 1st-place finish, with O’Brien in 2nd — and well-deserved.

Day 3

After a leaderboard shakeup post-Day 2, we checked the standings to see that the scores were looking quite different. To recap, here’s where we stand after the first two events of Day 3:


  1. Tia-Clair Toomey
  2. Mallory O’Brien
  3. Emma Lawson


  1. Ricky Garard
  2. Justin Medeiros
  3. Roman Khrennikov

The Games aren’t even over, and already we’re seeing the stuff that’s going to build the memories of the 2022 competitive season.

Tia’s Climb

We thought that maybe, possibly, perhaps this was going to be the year Tia’s reign as the fittest ended. O’Brien’s in it to win it, and she’s got what it takes. In a move that could only be possible by the likes of someone like Toomey, she climbed her way back to the #1 spot on the leaderboard.

She finished Up and Over a full minute ahead of O’Brien, and The Capitol more than two minutes ahead. However, she also got off to a really rough start, occupying parts of the leaderboard we can’t ever remember her hanging around. Note that as of right now, O’Brien’s only two tiny points behind and has been fairly consistent in her performance thus far. It won’t take much for us to have a new gold medalist.

Ricky’s Return

Years ago, he wasn’t exactly the most well-liked man in the sport. Even today, people are still grumbling about a past choice he made. However, nobody can deny it: Garard. Is. Back.

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Right now, he’s sitting very comfortably in 1st place, nearly 100 points ahead of the beast known as Justin Medeiros. Out of seven events thus far, he’s finished in the top three in five of them. In other words, Garard’s really going to have to slow down if another athlete is going to take his spot on the podium.

Emily Rolfe Withdraws

It’s not unheard of for a competitor not to make it through the week. And unfortunately, this year, Emily Rolfe had to bow at after the first event, and now we know why. In a post on her Instagram page, Rolfe explained that in a scary turn of events, she had to have emergency vascular surgery to remove two blood clots in her brachial and radial arteries.

However, she remains hopeful, saying, “I am now recovering and would like to extend my sincerest gratitude for the love and support to all those who have reached out with their messages. This is truly what the CrossFit community is all about and both Kyle and I are extremely grateful.⁣” Feel better, Emily!

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What the Sport is All About

And lastly, for now, we’re going to leave you with this:

Here’s what happened. The Capitol was no joke. It included pig flips, 3.5 miles of running, and (for the women) carrying a 70lb bag followed by a 150lb bag. And here was the real kicker: There was no time cap. You had to finish.

Well, Rebecca Fuselier is about 5’2″ and 127lbs, meaning the second bag was heavier than she is. As all of the other athletes were wrapping up, she continued to struggle to make it up the steps of the Capitol trying to hang onto 200lb in her arms. But as can be expected with this community, Fuselier had the entire crowd behind her, cheering her on every single step of the way.

It was a moment we won’t forget. Many spectators were scratching their heads after, *ahem*, the introduction of the double-under crossovers, wondering if HQ was out of ideas for how to make the Games more challenging. And then we saw this. Point taken, HQ! Point taken.

Day 2

Due to yesterday’s weather, Event 2 was pushed to today.

Shuttle to Overhead

From 0:00-2:00

  • Run 400m
  • Max jerks

Rest 1 minute

From 3:00-6:00

  • Run 600m
  • Max jerks

Rest 2 minutes

From 8:00-12:00

  • Run 800m
  • Max jerks

Women: 200 lb
Men: 300 lb

The scoring for this was interesting because it was treated as two separate events. Part A was the athlete’s total time to finish the running. Part B was the total number of jerks they completed for the three rounds combined.

For the running portion, Haley Adams proved that her feet have wings, landing her in 1st place. About nine seconds behind her was Tia-Clair Toomey, with Gabriela Migała finishing in 3rd. For the jerks, Toomey finally got her chance to dominate (which bumped her up the leaderboard considerably), with Danielle Brandon three reps behind in 2nd, and Mallory O’Brien in 3rd.

On the men’s side, Uldis Upenieks flew at the speed of light, finishing his runs in record time and grabbing 1st. Ricky Garard crossed the line about seven seconds later, and Saxon Panchik secured 3rd. Seeing some fresh faces in the top three showed just how much athletes excel in certain areas. For the second scoring, Jeffrey Adler placed 1st, followed by Panchik, and powerhouse Garard landed in 3rd.

At the end of Day 2, here’s where we’re at:


  1. Tia-Clair Toomey
  2. Mallory O’Brien
  3. Emma Lawson


  1. Ricky Garard
  2. Justin Medeiros
  3. Roman Khrennikov

This was an interesting day. Toomey did some serious catching up with this event. Her performance thus far has been totally uncharacteristic, but we also know that one thing that’s made her a champion over the last several years is her nonstop grit. If anyone can dig themselves out of a hole, it’s Tia. And she did. She finished Day 1 in 9th place, and she’s already made up enough ground to once again be on top.

While the running portion shook up the leaderboard for the men, it wasn’t enough to change the current overall standings. Garard has been hungry for a comeback for the last four years, and so far, he’s delivering. Medeiros already proved he was capable of big things, and he’s not disappointing us. And Khrennikov is demonstrating that consistency can be enough to have you ahead of the pack.

Bring on Day 3!

Day 1

Like every year past, Day 1 did not disappoint.

Event 1: Bike to Work

For time:

  • 75 toes-to-bars
  • 5-mile bike
  • 75 chest-to-bar pull-ups
  • 5-mile bike

You didn’t think this was going to be easy, did you? Our grip hurts just thinking about this event. An upper-body burn, lower-body burn, cardio killer, and grip demolisher?

Haley Adams started with a bang, bagging 1st place with a time of 38:23.75 (for her first career event win). Tia-Clair Toomey was just a few seconds behind her, and Emma Lawson finished not far behind in 3rd.

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We predicted that Ricky Garard would show up to win, and he did, finishing Event 1 36:47.61. Jonne Koski was on his heels, finishing 2nd, followed by Justin Medeiros in 3rd with a time of 36:53.65. In other words, it was close. Scary close. Finishing-within-seconds-of-each-other close.

Event 2: Shuttle to Overhead A/B

Moved to Day 2 due to rain!

Event 3: Skill Speed Medley

Round 1:

  • 3/2 pegboard ascents
  • 75 unbroken single-unders
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, left
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, right
  • Handstand walk course

Round 2:

  • 2/1 strict pegboard ascents
  • 50 unbroken double-unders
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, left
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, right
  • Handstand walk course, pirouette start

Round 3:

  • 1 strict pegboard ascent
  • 25 double-under crossovers
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, left
  • 10 unbroken single-leg squats, right
  • Handstand walk course, low start

This was a spicy one. The pool of athletes was narrowed down round by round, and whoever won in Round 3 ultimately won it all. Not to mention the Games introduced a new exercise: the double-under crossover. Um… what?!

Already, the leaderboard started getting wonky. On the women’s side, Danielle Brandon finished 1st, followed by Rebecca Fuselier in 2nd, and Emma Lawson in 3rd. In a twist that nobody saw coming, Toomey was nixed after Round 1 and finished the event in 23rd place, with Kara Saunders right behind her.

Event 3 also gave the men a run for their money. After winning Round 1, Noah Ohlsen couldn’t defeat the pegboard in Round 3 and ended up not finishing before the time cap. At the end of it all, Nick Mathew landed in 1st, Guilherme Malheiros placed 2nd, and Medeiros — the king of consistency — grabbed 3rd.

Event 4: Elizabeth Elevated

21-15-9-9-9 reps for time of:

  • Squat cleans
  • Dips with parallel bar traverses

Women: 95-lb cleans
Men: 135-lb cleans

The traditional Elizabeth WOD gives us 21-15-9 reps for time of cleans and ring dips, but this is the CrossFit Games. Naturally, they had to kick things up a notch. The traverses are far more taxing than they look, and squat cleans? Don’t forget Day 1 started with 10 miles on the bike. Plus, Event 4 had a 12-minute time cap, which had the competitors moving a little faster than they probably wanted to.

By the time we got to Heat 3 for the ladies, we were seeing a lot of touch-and-go for the cleans. Kara Saunders, lethal with a barbell, looked like she had taken first — until Arielle Loewen somehow beat her time by about 15 seconds to take 1st place. Saunders still secured 2nd, and Mal O’Brien landed in 3rd. It was another rough go for Toomey, who led the way earlier on in the event before falling behind and finishing the event in 9th.

On the men’s side, OG Pat Vellner grabbed his first event win, almost 40 seconds ahead of 2nd-place finisher Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson, and Colten Mertens securing 3rd about four seconds after. It wasn’t quite enough to put any of them in the top three overall, but the Games have only just begun.

At the end of Day 1, here’s where we stand:


  1. Mallory O’Brien
  2. Emma Lawson
  3. Arielle Loewen


  1. Ricky Garard
  2. Justin Medeiros
  3. Jonne Koski

And that’s a wrap for Day 1 of the 2022 CrossFit Games. Stay tuned for Day 2!

Featured image: Tia-Clair Toomey/Instagram