If you’ve been following along through the first two days of competition in Dubai, it’s likely you’ve noticed a variety of nationalities represented on the leaderboard. What you may not have realized is how many of these countries are being represented by the reigning fittest man or woman in their respective countries. And, in case you’ve forgotten why that’s significant, let me remind you that if you are the highest placing male or female in your country in this year’s Open, you automatically earn a trip to the CrossFit Games!
In the field of individual competitors at Dubai this weekend you are watching 8 male and 10 female national champions from the 2018 Open (as well as several athletes who were second in their country).
These Men were all Fittest in their Nation last year in the Open:
- Mat Fraser (USA)
- Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson (Iceland)
- Willy Georges (France)
- Dean Linder Leighton (Australia- WD due to injury)
- Giorgis Karavis (Greece)
- Jason Smith (South Africa)
- Uldis Upenieks (Latvia)
- Lazar Dukic (Serbia)
These Men were 2nd Fittest in their Nation last year in the Open:
- Brandon Swan (Australia)
- Alex Kotoulas (Greece)
- Ruan Duvenage (South Africa
- Casper Gammelmark (Denmark)
- Viktor Langsved (Sweden)
- Frederik Aegidius (Iceland)
- Streat Hoerner (USA)
These Women were all Fittest in their Nation last year in the Open:
- Laura Horvath (Hungary)
- Annie Thorisdottir (Iceland- WD due to injury)
- Jamie Greene (Australia- might qualify in UAE though, depends on rulebook)
- Carolyn Prevost (Canada)
- Karin Frey (Slovakia)
- Sam Briggs (UK)
- Gabriela Migala (Poland)
- Anna Fragkou (Greece)
- Manon Angonese (Luxembourg)
- Camilla Salomonsson Hellman (Sweden)
Also Cassidy Lance McWherter, who is competing on a team in Dubai, was the fittest in the USA last year (she also happened to win the Open).
These Women were 2nd Fittest in their Nation last year in the Open:
- Sara Sigmundsdottir (Iceland)
- Jessica Coughlan (Australia)
- Emma McQuaid (UK)
What does all of this mean?
It means that there’s the potential for us to be seeing not just the event winner from the 2018 Dubai CrossFit Championships at the CrossFit Games next summer, but that we’ll be seeing dozens of these athletes show up to compete there as national champions. So get out your almanacs and start learning about this incredibly diverse, and exceptionally talented, field of athletes, because you’ll almost certainly be seeing them again throughout the year!