This past weekend, twenty-three of the fittest athletes in the state competed at the Best of AZ Invitational event hosted at CrossFit Fury in Goodyear. The event is the brain child of Fury Owner, Peter Egyed, Coach Aimee Berencsi and Coach/Programmer, Josh MacDonald who teamed up to bring local athletes a high-intensity regional style event in their home state.
The invitation only event selected athletes based on their performance in the 2015 CrossFit Open, specifically athletes who finished in the top 100 – most having Regional’s experience in the past year or two. Regional style staging, transitions and logistics were also in place to give athletes a more authentic experience.
“Regional level competitors need regional level competitions and we didn’t feel like there are enough in Arizona to truly help people get a feel for what Regional’s is like,” said Aimee Berencsi, trainer at CrossFit Fury.
The morning started promptly at 8:00 a.m. with Grace – one of two sprint wod’s for the day. Fury athlete, Will Trujillo, came out of the gate strong and took the event with a time of 1:27. Tennil Reed (OPEX) edged Claire Treanor (CrossFit Blade) by one second with a time of 1:32 establishing her tone for 1st place finishes for the day.
The next test combined chest to bar, handstand walks and deadlifts (3 rounds of 25 C2B, 10m unbroken HS walk, 12 DL 140/95kg, 10m unbroken HS walk – 12 min cap). Once again, Reed took 1st for the women, but Fury’s own Tommy Vinas stepped up and took 1st on the men’s side in a foot race to the finish with Ryan Laframboise (Urban Warfit) – beating him by two seconds.
Next, the athletes had three minutes to establish a 3RM push press (no jerk allowed) followed by one minute of rest and then three minutes for max effort muscle-ups. Vinas was the only male athlete to hit a 122kg lift setting up his second 1st place finish on Event 3. Vinas and Laframboise exchanged reps again in the max effort muscle-ups, but it was Vinas with 28 reps who took Event 4. Tennil Reed and Fury’s Rebecca Mendez tied for 1st place on Event 3 with a 3RM push press of 81kg, but Reed ran away with the muscle-up effort with 20 total reps and another 1st place finish on Event 4.
After a forty-five minute break for lunch and recovery, the athletes tackled the longest workout of the day with the 100’s chipper (100 wallball, 75 HSPU, 50 axle PC 50kg/35kg, 50 FS 50kg/35kg). Vinas and Reed continued their first place streak after the break and solidified their podium spots as they headed into the final sprint, Event 6 (7 rope climbs, 7 full snatches 70kg/50kg).
With six 1st place finishes, Reed was named Best of AZ. Claire Treanor of CrossFit Blade and Analisa Marquez of East Valley CrossFit finished 2nd and 3rd with only two points separating the two athletes. Fury’s own Rebecca Mendez finished the day in 4th and Bomb Squad newcomers Chrissy Greer and Michelle Moore took 7th and 9th.
On the men’s side, Tommy Vinas of CrossFit Fury took home bragging rights and a 1st place finish for the day. Ryan Laframboise and Christopher Gartrell (Two Forty Four) finished in 2nd and 3rd and Fury athlete, Will Trujillo finished the day in 5th place.
The Best of AZ is behind us, but with such a successful day of competition, the creators of the event are already planning the next one for December 19th and 20th to give some of the fittest athletes in Arizona another chance to retest their fitness against high-level competitors.
“The series is designed to give athletes a chance to build in a heavy training weekend that simulates a regional environment. We decided the next event will occur over a Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning to more closely mirror the Regional format,” said Josh MacDonald Best of AZ Programmer and Flow Master.
Priscilla Tallman is Fury’s staff writer and social media team member. She holds her Crossfit L1 cert as well as the CrossFit Mobility Certification and an undergraduate and graduate degree in Clinical Psychology. She teaches mobility class at Fury and is a freelance writer and blogger in her spare time. She is married with two children and in a former life played collegiate and professional volleyball.