Mat Fraser and Katrin Davidsdottir have won the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games. Fraser claimed his title after consecutive second-place finishes in 2014 (his rookie year) and 2015. Davidsdottir holds onto her title from 2015, which was her third Games appearance and first on the podium.
The 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games proved especially taxing for the Individual athletes, and this was the first year in Games history that they were tested on five consecutive days. Wednesday saw the individuals making a surprise trip to Aromas, California, where the Games were held in 2007, 2008, and 2009 before moving to the StubHub Center (then the Home Depot Center) in Carson. Aromas included three events for the individual athletes, followed by a 500 meter swim on Thursday and then events in the StubHub center Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.
This iteration of the Games will likely be remembered as the year Mat Fraser finally broke free of second place — and for most of the week, it wasn’t even close.
Fraser pulled ahead of the Men’s pack early on with an event win on a 7km Aromas trail run. Though not one of the fields’ stronger runners in years past, Fraser proved there are few gaps left in his fitness with a commanding victory at The Ranch. He also finished second in Sunday morning’s “Suicide Sprint” and never relinquished his overall lead during the weekend events. Fraser’s lead was so great that he’d already locked in the win before Sunday’s final event, appropriately named “Redemption.”
Last year’s winner Ben Smith finished second behind Fraser. Canadian athlete Patrick Vellner took third, followed by countryman Brent Fikowski in fourth. Cole Sager — in his third consecutive CrossFit Games appearance — came in fifth.
Davidsdottir held on to her title, but her victory wasn’t as commanding as Fraser’s. The Icelandic athlete traded the leader’s white jersey several times with Australia’s Tia-Clair Toomey, the second-place finisher from 2015. Toomey still has a busy summer ahead of her and will represent Australia in weightlifting at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
Ultimately, the top four women were identical in 2015 and 2016: Davidsdottir on top, followed by Toomey in second, Sara Sigmundsdottir in third, and Samantha Briggs in fourth place. Second-year Games competitor Kari Pearce rounded out the top 5.
CrossFit Mayhem — captained by 4-time Games Individual winner Rich Froning — has repeated as Affiliate Cup Champions. Froning’s “Mayhem Freedom” squad included multi-time Games Individual competitors James Hobart and Lindy Barber, along with Matt Hewett, Elly Kabboord, and Kristin Reffett. Mayhem led for most of the competition, and their performances throughout the 2016 Games led to a new record for overall Event wins for a team.
By Saturday afternoon, it was clear the Affiliate Cup competition had boiled down to Mayhem in first, with everyone else battling out for what remained of the podium. 12 Labours CrossFit finished in second, with CrossFit Yas in third. CrossFit Dynamix and CrossFit OC3 rounded out the top 5.
Featured Image: Katrin Davidsdottir’s Instagram (@katrintanja)