In a move that’s surprised most of the functional fitness community, Eric Roza has fired Dave Castro as General Manager for CrossFit LLC — this according to an internal email to employees per The Morning Chalk Up. After Greg Glassman stepped down as CEO, Castro remained the one constant in the sport, the first and only director of the CrossFit Games. Two huge questions linger: (1) Why? and (2) Who could possibly replace Castro?

As for why, all Roza said in his email was, “I have made the difficult decision to change the leadership of the Sport team to best support CrossFit’s go-forward plans, and Dave Castro will be leaving the business.” Why the change in leadership was necessary and why he believes Castro can’t be a part of it, we don’t know.

There is no one like Dave Castro, but sure enough, his spot has already been filled: “Dave has assembled a world-class team, which will now be led by Justin Bergh, and we are excited to see this new generation of leadership build on his legacy as we work together to bring our Sport to the next level of success.” Bergh is a long-time CrossFit employee and was previously VP of Sport and Partnerships.

It’s unclear what specifically led to this significant change. After all, in his email, Roza acknowledged the impact Castro has had on the sport: “His vision, creativity and drive have taken the CrossFit Games from an informal backyard competition at his family’s ranch into a global phenomenon with hundreds of thousands of participants and millions of viewers worldwide. Dave was also a central figure in the growth of CrossFit’s training business, helping to scale the seminar department to reach tens of thousands of trainers. All of us in the world of CrossFit owe Dave a debt of gratitude for his contributions, and we wish him well as he brings his talents to his next chapter.”

Interestingly, Castro confirmed the news on Instagram but denied the decision was mutual, as Roza was apparently going to convey.

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A post shared by @thedavecastro

Change is inevitable. CrossFit has certainly been through many iterations over the years. But Dave Castro was a part of every single one of them. When drama struck and Glassman left, it was Castro that welcomed in Roza. It’s hard to imagine what the future of CrossFit will look like without him. What will we do without his incredibly vague clues leading up to the Open (which is happening next month!) and the Games? How could anyone come up with the insane programming that he does? In many ways, Dave Castro and CrossFit are forever linked. And if the comments section on his post is any indication, he will be greatly missed.

It’ll be very interesting to see where things go from here. We’ll keep this post updated as details are released.

What do you think of Roza’s decision? How do you think the sport will change without Castro?

Main image: Dave Castro/Instagram