A Brief History of the CrossFit Games
The CrossFit Games came to an exciting and exhilarating end this past Sunday at the Home Depot Center in Southern California. This year marked the first year of CrossFit’s partnership with Reebok to present the Games and the first year ESPN was involved in broadcasting the Games lives on the internet.
It is not unreasonable to imagine that before long CrossFit will be an alternative spot on par with strong man competitions and the X-Games, broadcast on television and known worldwide. But, with such exponential growth happening in the CrossFit community, does everyone know where the Games started and how far they have come?
Male Champion: James Fitzgerald
2008 – In the second year of the CrossFit Games it is first come first serve as far as securing a spot in the competition with a cap of 300 athletes. This year, however, there are complaints some of the best athletes did not make it into the competition and rumors begin that the next year there will be qualifiers on a regional level. The film “Every Second Counts” follows the action of this year’s Games.
Male Champion: Jason Khalipa
2009 – The first year of qualifiers. Individual athletes must compete and qualify on a regional level before advancing to the Games. Team competition, however, is still first come first serve. An overwhelming registration for the team competition prompts suggestions that teams, too, will have to qualify in upcoming years.
Male Champion: Mikko Salo
2010 – CrossFit adds Sectional qualifiers that select athletes to move onto Regionals and then finally onto the Games. For the first time, teams must also qualify at the Regionals and a Masters Division is added to the competition. The Games move to Southern California and take place at the Home Depot Center in Carson. The male and female individual winners are each awarded $25,000. The event is broadcast in entirety by CrossFit, streaming live on the internet.
Male Champion: Graham Holmberg
2011 – CrossFit does away with Sectional qualifiers and instead innovates an internet based competition for spots at Regional competitions. Reebok partners with CrossFit and the Games are again held at the Home Depot Center. This year, however, individual male and female winners are each awarded $250,000 and $1,000,000 total in prize money is given away. The Masters Division is divided up even further into four age groups. ESPN3 broadcasts 3 hours of live event coverage on the internet each day of the Games.
Male Champion: Rich Froning Jr.