Heading into the last event of the 2021 NOBULL CrossFit Games, four-time reigning Fittest Woman on Earth®, Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr, was mathematically locked to win her fifth consecutive Games title. Laura Horvàth sat safely in second place overall and would almost assuredly stand next to Toomey-Orr on the podium. The focal point of the final event in the Women’s Division was between two-time Fittest Woman on Earth®, Annie Thorisdottir, and Kristin Holte, who were tied for third place overall. Whoever bested the other in Event 15 would win the bronze.
On the men’s side, it was Patrick Vellner on the attack and Justin Medeiros on the defense. Medeiros controlled his fate with a 32-point lead — meaning that as long as he finished within six ranks of Vellner in Event 15, he would be the Fittest Man on Earth®. Additionally, Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson was 19 points behind Brent Fikowski for the bronze medal position.
Individual Event 15 — Top Five Men
- Justin Medeiros — 6:36.59
- Saxon Panchik — 6:47.09
- Jonne Koski — 7:00.66
- Guilherme Malheiros — 7:01.54
- Travis Mayer — 7:15.89
Individual Event 15 — Top Five Women
- Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr — 6:22.32
- Laura Horváth — 7:37.39
- Annie Thorisdottir — 7:10.58
- Haley Adams — 7:27.29
- Mallory O’Brien — 7:30.50
Individual Event 15
- 600-meter row
- 90 chest-to-bar pull-ups
- 36-foot back-rack walking lunge
- 36-foot front-rack walking lunge
- 36-foot overhead walking lunge
Men: 185 pounds | Women: 135 pounds | short bar
Time cap: 11 minutes
In the heat, one for the men — Scott Panchik made his way onto the CrossFit Games competition floor for the final time. The broadcast team called him the greatest CrossFit Games athlete never to reach the podium — he has seven top-six finishes, three of which were fourth place (2012-13, 2019). He held the lead for the majority of heat one. He ultimately finished second, narrowly beaten by Travis Mayer in the heat.
For heat two, Medeiros knew as long as he stayed within six ranks of Vellner, he would claim the title. Lazar Đukić took the lead in the heat after the row with Jonne Koski by his side.
In the first half of the pull-ups, Noah Ohlsen took over the lead. Medeiros boosted a double-digit rep lead over Vellner. Gudmundsson was well ahead of Fikowski, struggled in the front half of this heat.
Koski was the leader heading into the lunges. Medeiros furthered his lead over Vellner. In the second interval of lunges, Medeiros took over the lead and never looked back. He wins the event and is the Fittest Man on Earth®. Fikowski was able to fend off Gudmundsson. The podium stands Medeiros, Vellner, Fikowski.
Emma Cary rowed herself to an early lead in heat one. Through the first two sets of pull-ups, Baylee Rayl and Jacqueline Dahlstrøm traded off the lead with Cary and Katrin Davíðsdóttir. Arielle Loewen and Thuridur Helgadottir were also in the mix at the front of the pack.
By the first round of lunges, Dahlstrøm claimed the lead for herself. Cary was only a few reps back and Davíðsdóttir was on her heels. Dahlstrøm had to break and Cary seized the moment with a heat-winning time of 7:37.39. Davíðsdóttir finished in second at 7:39.81.
The battle for the bronze was underway in heat two for the women. Thorisdottir was done with the row before Holte and onto the pull-ups. Through the first three sets of pull-ups, the soon-to-be six-time champion Toomey-Orr took over the lead.
Toomey-Orr held onto the lead and won the event. Horváth finished behind her and Thorisdottir finished in third in the heat and guaranteed her spot on the podium.
The Fittest On Earth
Justin Medeiros is the 2021 Fittest Man on Earth® — the youngest to ever win the title at age 22. His only event win was the final event of the competition, but his consistency was rewarded. He was the overall leader for the entire back half of the competition and held on to bring home the title.
Toomey-Orr won the final event of the 2021 Games but had her sixth consecutive title locked up well before that. CrossFit General Manager of Sport Dave Castro announced her as “the most dominant CrossFit athlete of all time” once she officially won the 2021 Games.
Feature image courtesy of CrossFit.