Five Storylines to Follow At the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games

Follow all of the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games on BarBend starting August 1st!

Athletes have officially touched down in Madison, Wisconsin for the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games. The stage is being set for what is expected to be one of the most exciting Reebok CrossFit Games yet. The action starts on Thursday, August 1st and runs through Sunday, August 4th.

We’ve got you covered through the entire Reebok CrossFit Games, and will be live streaming all four days on our

  1. Website
  2. Facebook
  3. YouTube channel

Before tuning in on Thursday, we’ve included some relevant links below to make sure you know who’s competing, how scoring and cuts will work, and the schedule.

Now that you’ve hopefully got a grasp on how the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games have changed, here are some of the biggest storylines to follow and get you even more excited.

Three-Time Fittest Man on Earth™: Mat Fraser

Chances are, you’re probably familiar with this guy. Mat Fraser is a three-time Reebok CrossFit Games Champion (2016, 2017, 2018), and is the reigning Fittest Man on Earth™. This year he will be looking for his fourth straight CrossFit Games title, a feat only performed once by the legendary Rich Froning.

Fraser first entered the Games scene in 2014, and finished in second place in his debut (behind Froning.) In 2015, Fraser again finished in second place, but this time behind Ben Smith. From 2016 until now, Fraser has edged out the individual men’s competition by an increasing margin every year and all eyes will be on him as he looks to join the four-time Games Champion club with Froning.

Two-Time Fittest Woman on Earth™: Tia-Clair Toomey

Tia-Clair Toomey is a two-time Reebok CrossFit Games Champion and a name you are probably well familiar with in the world of CrossFit or weightlifting.

Toomey was crowned the Fittest Woman on Earth™ in 2017 and 2018, and will be looking for her third-straight title this year. Will Toomey get the three-peat? We can’t wait to see how the women’s individual field plays out.

In other Toomey news, after parting ways with Reebok in June, Toomey will be rocking a new look at this year’s Games. Toomey signed with NOBULL earlier this month, and will be repping NOBULL Trainers all weekend. And on that note, athletes now have the choice to wear whatever shoes they want at the Reebok CrossFit Games, after CrossFit founder, Greg Glassman told Armen Hammer TV in an interview back in April that athletes now have the freedom to sport whatever shoes they want (whereas in years past it was Reebok only.)

Ben Smith Earns a Wildcard

Earning an invite to the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games has been no walk in the park. It took CrossFit Sanctionals™ victories, being crowned a National Champion, or qualifying through the Open to claim a spot in Madison.

But, there was also another way to the Games, and that was through a Wildcard invite.

A Wildcard spot means that the athlete has not earned a spot through the various CrossFit Sanctionals™ events, being a National Champion, or the Open. After the campaign “getbensmithtothegames” started last week, CrossFit HQ granted Ben Smith a Wildcard invite.

It will be interesting to see how these athletes do in the competitive men’s individual field.

Scoring Shake Up

Scoring at the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games will be unlike anything we’ve ever seen before.

After  the first day of competition the field of individual athletes will go from 148 men and 134 women, down to 75 athletes (per division). There will be 14 teams on the first day, and that  number will get cut down to 11 teams for Event 2.

These cuts are a direct result of the new scoring in place, which in short will mean that every time an athlete or a team wins an event, they’ll get 100 points. 

By the final individual event the first place finisher will once again earn 100 points, but the last place finisher will only get 10 points, which is 90 points less. The field will look different every single day, and come Sunday, it will be a small, heated, and intimate race to the top.

Family Ties

This year, there will be some good family competition at the Reebok CrossFit Games.

Scott Panchik, a five-time CrossFit Games athlete will be competing this year with his brother Saxon Panchik. While Scott is a Games veteran, Saxon only recently earned his invite to the Games. Earlier this month, CrossFit HQ announced that Henrik Inri Oskarsson tested positive for a banned substance, which meant his invite got passed down to Panchik. It was Panchik’s fourth place finish at Reykjavik CrossFit Championship that earned his spot in Madison. This will be Saxon’s second appearance at the Games, he finished in 19th place overall at the 2018 Reebok CrossFit Games.

In addition to the Panchiks, there’s another set of brothers at this year’s Games: The Smith Brothers. As mentioned above, Ben Smith was given a Wildcard invite last week, while his brother Alec Smith is attending the Games competing for Team CrossFit Krypton. This year will make Ben an 11-time Games athlete, while Alec has competed at the Games twice as an individual athlete in 2017 and 2018. Out of all the years these two brothers have competed at the Games, they’ve only went head-to-head once in 2017.

Whether you’re tuning in to watch Fraser and Toomey defend their thrones, or are just interested in how all the scoring will go down, the 2019 Reebok CrossFit Games will provide no shortage of excitement.

Be sure to tune in to BarBend starting Thursday for full coverage.

Featured image from @tiaclair1 Instagram page.

Celia Balf

Celia Balf

Celia is a Staff News Writer at BarBend. At the BarBend office, you can find Celia writing news stories covering the largest strength sport competitions in the world, in-depth features with world record-holders, big lifts, and everything in-between. Celia also orchestrates and helps create content for the BarBend social media pages. She is a former Division 1 soccer player turned content producer and sports journalist.

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