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October 24, 2019 2 min read

Britain’s Samantha Briggs showed impressive form with a second-place overall finish in the first week of the 2020 open.

The five-week series, which allows athletes of all abilities to compete against the world’s best, got underway last weekend.

A gruelling 10 rounds of eight barbell ground-to-overheads (95lbs for men or 65lbs for women) followed by 10 bar-facing burpees was the challenge, with the objective to complete the workout as quickly as possible.

On the women’s side of the competition, Emma McQuaid of Ireland clocked the fastest time of seven minutes and 41 seconds, a full 20 seconds in front of her nearest rival Briggs.

Briggs, 39, finished 18th at the Games in August and has been 1st in the UK at
the Open for the last four years.

On the men’s side, Greek athlete Lefteris Theofanidis managed eight minutes and five seconds to finish first.

Theofanidis only came 60th on his debut at the Games this year but resumed the form he showed last year at the Open when he massively improved his 2018 finish of 164th to fourth.

CrossFit Games champion Mat Fraser, meanwhile, registered a time of eight minutes and 28 seconds to come ninth in the rankings.
Before the competitors began submitting their times, the announcement of the Open was dominated by a live competition between CrossFit legend Rich Froning and Scott Panchik.

Panchik beat the four-time Games champion and three-time Open champion with relative ease after taking down the overheads aggressively.
“Pain set in right around [set] two or three,” Panchik said after completing the workout. “I was just trying to think about being smooth.”

The head-to-head battle came just after Panchik had been announced as a new member of Team CrossFit Mayhem which, with Froning at the forefront, has been dominant in recent years. Froning said of the workout: “It’s minimising those transitions. Scott was a lot quicker on that bar, maybe a bit slower on the those burpees but he’d get right back on the bar.”

The next workout will take place on October 18 when the competition continues.


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