2021 CrossFit Lowlands Throwdown Recap — Annie Thorisdottir Returns, Gudmundsson Dominates

Europe’s finest CrossFit athletes shine in the virtual competition

If you thought there was something missing from CrossFit Semifinals action so far, may we suggest Sons and Dottirs? Familiar faces from European countries topped the leaderboard during week three (June 11-13, 2021) at the CrossFit Lowlands Throwdown. Athletes competed virtually at their home gyms due to uncertainty regarding COVID-19 regulations in the Netherlands, where the event was to be held. This gave new meaning to the “unknown and unknowable” variables CrossFit loves to tout, as athletes couldn’t look over to the next lane for pacing or strategy. 

All athletes competing in virtual CrossFit Semifinal events complete the same six workouts, which means those on the Lowlands Throwdown leaderboard also completed the same workouts as the Brazil CrossFit Championship and the CrossFit German Throwdown. Below are the top 10 men, women, and teams along with recaps of each day of competition. 


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Editor’s Note: The top five men, women, and teams qualify for the 2021 NOBULL CrossFit Games. The unofficial Games qualifiers below are noted in bold. Unofficial leaderboards below may shift following CrossFit’s video reviews

CrossFit Lowlands Throwdown 2021 Female Top 10

  1. Emma McQuaid (548)
  2. Laura Horvath (544) 
  3. Annie Thorisdottir (528)
  4. Gabriela Migała (528)
  5. Thuridur Erla Helgadottir (460)
  6. Karin Freyova (416)
  7. Elena Carratala Sanahuja (412)
  8. Manon Angonese (409)
  9. Lucy Campbell (386)
  10. Martyna Krysiak (362)

CrossFit Lowlands Throwdown 2021 Male Top 10

  1. Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson (484)
  2. Adrian Mundwiler (476)
  3. Uldis Upenieks (456)
  4. Sam Stewart (456)
  5. Henrik Haapalainen (449)
  6. Lukas Grouleff (394) 
  7. Ioannis Papadopoulos (386)
  8. Jakub Cieslik (363)
  9. Moritz Fiebig (361) 
  10. Bronislaw Olenkowicz (355)

CrossFit Lowlands Throwdown 2021 Teams Top 10

  1. CrossFit Nordic (525)
  2. Team CrossFit Holistic (515)
  3. Motion (495)
  4. Team Butchers Lab T-Bone (480)
  5. Bergen Limitless (460)
  6. CrossFit 8020 (415)
  7. CrossFit Caen (405)
  8. Team Aarhus CrossFit (375)
  9. Team Genius (370)
  10. Team CrossFit Walleye (335)

Day One Recap

Friendly Fran was first up for individuals, and while some may contest her “friendliness,” most of this crowd is at least familiar with her: This was one of the workouts in the first stage of the virtual 2020 CrossFit Games. This version of Fran upgrades the pull-up to the chest-to-bar version, adds 20 pounds to the barbell for thrusters, and knocks the rep scheme up from 21-15-9 to 21 for all three rounds.

Switzerland’s Adrian Mundweiler took this one with a time of 3:51, which would have been good enough for second place at the 2020 CrossFit Games event (behind Mat Fraser’s 3:08). Relatively unknown German Moritz Fieberg took second, just a second behind Mundweiler. Bjorn Karl Gudmundsson, arguably coming in as the favorite for this Semifinal, tied for 11th at 4:30, 20 seconds behind his 2020 Games time. 

Laura Horvath had a score to settle on Friendly Fran — with herself. She took first in this event at 4:06, absolutely annihilating her 5:47 2020 Games time on this event. At the Games,  this would have been the difference between her actual 24th place and third place. Ireland’s Emma McQuaid came in second at 4:30, also PRing this event from her 2020 Games time of 4:46. 

The second event of the day was a dumbbell chipper, including shoulder-to-overheads, deadlifts, and 100 overhead squats, with GHD sit-ups mixed in for good measure. Initial results showed Denmark’s Frederik Aegidius taking the event, but after a video review penalty, Aegidius fell to 10th place. Gudmundsson would be named the event winner, coming in at 12:51, far ahead of the 25-minute time cap none of the athletes would need. 

Competing from her own Lowlands microcosm event alongside Gudmundsson and Aegidius at CrossFit Reykjavik, Iceland’s Annie Thorisdottir claimed first in event two. Thorisdottir completed GHD situps with kinesiology tape across her abdominals, a reminder she was pregnant with her first child a mere 10 months before this competition. She finished ahead of Gabriela Migała in second and Horvath in third. 

The word of day one for teams was “synchro.” Event one was a Fran-flavored three rounds for time of synchro thrusters, chest-to-bar pull-ups, and bar-facing burpees. Sweden’s CrossFit  Nordic and CrossFit Holistic tied for first in the event, finishing over a minute ahead of third-place Motion out of England. The second workout, a synchro version of the individual’s dumbbell and GHD workout, would also feature a first-place tie. Poland’s Team Genius and CrossFit 8020 out of Northern Ireland topped the event two leaderboards. Holistic was behind them in third, taking the top spot for the day.

Day Two Recap

Gymnastics and monostructural cardio hit the scene for event three, with 60 muscle-ups to boot. Denmark’s Lukas Grouleff liked this one, finishing a minute-and-change ahead of second-place   Gudmundsson. Latvia’s Uldis Upenieks would continue a consistently strong three events with a fourth-place finish. An ascending snatch ladder would drop him to 17th on the next event, though, and shake up the leaderboard a bit.

Poland’s Bronislaw Olenkowicz got through 21 snatches at 245 pounds to take first, followed by Greece’s Ioannis Papadopoulos and Mundwiler. At the end of day two, a consistent Gudmundsson would sit atop the leaderboard, followed by Mundwiler, Ireland’s Sam Stewart, Upenieks, and Fiebig.


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On the women’s side, McQuaid would take event three, followed by Games veteran Thuridur Erla Helgadottir out of Iceland. On event four, Horvath would finish 20 snatches at 165 pounds to take first place, with Thorisdottir and Migala close behind at 19 snatches each. Day two’s leaderboard for the women would be McQuaid, Horvath, Migala, Thorisdottir, and Helgadottir, in that order.

Event three for the Teams division again mirrored the individuals’, with women and men competing in pairs for muscle-ups and double unders. Motion took event three, followed by CrossFit Nordic and CrossFit Caen out of France.

Event four would take a note out of previous Semifinals events, with one woman and one man on each team each taking a max snatch and max clean & jerk lift. Motion again came out ahead with a combined 1,023 pounds. Team Butchers Lab T-Bone took second and Team CrossFit Holistic third. The second-place finish for Team Butchers Lab T-Bone would be enough to boost them onto the qualifying leaderboard at the end of day two.

Day Three Recap

Rows, handstand walks, and legless rope climbs, somewhat of a theme in Semifinals, awaited individuals on the final day of virtual competition. Climbing out of a 25th-place finish on event four, Grouleff took first in event five, his second of the competition, having also taken gymnastics-forward event three. Gudmundsson was right behind him in a solid second place. Grouleff needed the next event to fall his way to qualify for the Games, but Grettel, a new CrossFit Girl WOD who also showed up at the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge, wouldn’t play nice.

Cieslik took the top spot in the clean & jerk and burpee sprint, followed by Finland’s Henrik Haapalainen, who would take the fifth qualifying spot, and Mundweiler. Grouleff will hope to punch through to Madison in the Last-Chance Qualifier in two weeks (from the time this article was written). 

Horvath picked up a third event win in event five, followed by Helgadottir and overall leader McQuaid. No surprises showed up in Grettel either, with solid performances that left Migala in first, Thorisdottir a second behind her in second, and McQuaid in third place. Somewhat of a surprise, Games veteran Freyova out of Slovakia didn’t have quite the performance some may expect but will have another chance to make it to Madison, WI at the last chance qualifier.

Event five for the teams brought about similar movements, as teams moved through handstand walks and legless rope climbs in male-female pairs. Motion picked up a third event win in a row, followed by Nordic and T-Bone. In event six, teams also got to meet Grettel, and she brought a friend: Ingrid, a very similar Girl WOD, which trades clean-and-jerks for snatches. One male-female pair took each WOD. Dauntless Fitness out of England won this event, followed by CrossFit 8020 and CrossFit Nordic, who would win overall. 

Two weeks remain in the Semifinals race to the Games, including the Last-Chance Qualifiercompetition taking place the first weekend in July. The CrossFit Games will take place July 27 through August 1, 2021, in Madison, WI. 

Featured image: @crossfitgames on Instagram / Photo by Lewis Hopkins