The road to Madison started in Dubai in December and has moved to different locations around the world over the course of the last six months. That journey has now reached its penultimate stop in Paris. The final Sanctional concluded over the weekend, and we are now on the road to the final destination: the 2019 CrossFit Games!
In Paris at the French Throwdown, the final qualifying spots for the 2019 Games were on the line. After this weekend, the only way to get into Madison is if an athlete is awarded one of the final special invites. So who made the most out of this opportunity? Here is a brief recap.
Men’s Winner – Jonne Koski
For those of you who didn’t know or may not remember, Koski actually withdrew from the Open in 2018 due to injuries and has worked his way back to reach this point. Winning an event like the French Throwdown just weeks before the Games makes a loud statement that he’s back. However, Koski is also the Open champion for Finland, so his spot in the Games was already reserved and he’s set to make his fifth Games’ appearance.
Home-country favorite Willy Georges, who won the French Throwdown in 2018, finished second this year, but he had also already earned his trip to Madison as the Open champ of France. So the qualification at this Sanctional is awarded to the USA’s Josh Miller, who finished in the bronze position. This is going to be Miller’s debut at the Games.
Women’s Winner – Jacqueline Dahlstrom
Like Koski on the men’s side, Dahlstrom had already qualified for the Games thanks to her performance in the Open. She earned one of the top 20 available spots in the Open, finishing 22nd but many of the top 20 were national champions so those spots passed down.
This is Dahlstrom’s second Sanctional win, and she clinched it with a 44-point difference from second place. She also won the Reykjavik CrossFit Championship earlier this year. Carrie Beamer of the USA and Eik Glyfadottir rounded out the top three but had also already qualified for the Games. Beamer got a top-20 Open spot and Glyfadottir won the Asia CrossFit Championships to earn that qualifying position. So the qualification for this final Sanctional went to France’s own Sabrina Caron who finished fourth. Like Miller on the men’s side, Caron will also be making her CrossFit Games debut.
Team Winner – CrossFit Invictus Boston
Unlike in the men’s and women’s division, the winner of the team competition at the French Throwdown also claimed the Games qualification. CrossFit Invictus Boston—Meg Reardon, Craig Kenney, Kelsey Kiel, and Tola Morakinyo—previously earned a second-place finish at the Reykjavik event and also competed at the Granite Games.
The foursome left no doubt about leaving France with the victory either. The final score left them 140 points ahead of the second-place team, which was Team Romwod Meat Squad. CrossFit Mayhem Independence rounded out the podium.
The Road to the Games Begins
The French Throwdown was the final Sanctional of this season, so this new qualifying process has reached its conclusion. After countless miles, reps, steps, and emotions, the countdown begins until Aug. 1 when the 2019 CrossFit Games kicks off.
Stay tuned to FloElite with more updates and developments as we get closer to the beginning of the biggest event in CrossFit.
Roger Lockridge is from Lewisburg, West Virginia. His work has been featured on numerous platforms and magazines in the fitness industry over the last 10 years. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram.