The CrossFit Games “The Carson Era”: 30-16 Women’s Rankings

July 6, 202311 min read

Contributions from Brian Friend and John Young

Image Credits: CrossFit LLC

The CrossFit Games have moved locations a couple times during their history. We’ve broken down the history of the Games into different eras based on location. We started with the “Ranch Era”, and if you haven’t seen our top ten rankings for men and women for the years of 2007-2009 you can check them out:

For seven consecutive seasons following the move from the Ranch (2010 until 2016), they took place at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California. The Games took some huge steps forward during those years in several ways, and accordingly, so did the athletes. We’ve already broken down the top thirty men:

Returning for the “Carson Era” top-30 women is one of our friends, analyst John Young, and with that, we begin at number 30. 

30. Kristi Eramo

Kristi Eramo Games 2016 copy
  • 1 appearance
  • Best: 9th 2016
  • Average finish: 9
  • Event wins: none

“Sneaking into 30th on our rankings, Eramo only showed up for the final year of this era. She notched a top-ten finish in a very competitive year and every women ahead of her being 18th or better on this list, it was a strong enough performance to squeeze her in.” – Brian Friend

29. Cheryl Brost

Cheryl Brost Games copy
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 7th 2011
  • Average finish: 12
  • Event wins (1): Ball Toss 2012

“Cheryl Brost is probably most well known for her back-to-back CrossFit Games championships in 2016 and 2017 in the Masters divisions, but before that she was competing against the elite individual women’s field for three consecutive years when she was 40 years old including a top-ten and nothing worse than 15th. It was at the beginning of the “Carson Era”, but her accomplishments warrant a place on this list.” – Brian Friend

28. Deborah Cordner Carson

Deborah Cordner Carson Games copy
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 13th 2012
  • Average finish: 27
  • Event wins (2): Sprint and Elizabeth 2012

“Her showcase year was 2012 with two event wins and a career best finish. She was an early era power athlete, fast, strong, athletic, and she used those strengths to her advantage in both 2012 and 2013. Her only other appearance resulted in a DNF and pulls down her average which otherwise would have been much higher.” – Brian Friend

27. Jennifer Astle (Jones)

Jenn Jones Games 2015 copy
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 6th 2013
  • Average finish: 15
  • Event wins (1): Thick N Quick (2014)

“A sneaky sixth place in 2013, plus a very ‘under-the-radar’ win on ‘Thick-N-Quick’ in 2014 highlighted consecutive top-ten finishes for Astle (also known as Jenn Jones) in the middle of the ‘Carson Era’. Not the biggest or most recognizable name on the list, but these are the athletes who contributed to this era of the Games and are part of the reason we wanted to make these lists.” – Brian Friend

26. Emily Bridgers

Emily Bridgers Games copy
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 6th 2014
  • Average finish: 20
  • Event wins: none

“Although Bridgers only had three years in the ‘Carson Era’, they were the hardest years (2014-2016). Her 6th place finish in 2014 puts her above Jennifer Astle who’s 6th place finish was in 2013. Bridgers was known for her gymnastics abilities which were showcased in 2014 with a runner-up finish in ‘Midline March’ and a fourth in the handstand walk event in 2016.” – John Young

25. Kristin Holte

Kristin Holte Games 2016 copy
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 12th 2016
  • Average finish: 15
  • Event wins (2): Triple 3 2014, Sprint Course 2 2015

“It could be argued for Holte to be higher on the list with her two event wins, however her best placement in the ‘Carson Era’ was only 12th which holds her back. Holte’s career in the ‘Madison Era’ will be much more valued, but that is for another time. Something unique for Holte is that her two event wins are two very different types of running. A three-mile run in ‘Triple 3’ (2014) and a sprint in ‘Sprint Course 2’ (2015).” – John Young

24. Michelle Kinney

Michelle Kinney Games 2015 copy
  • 4 appearances
  • Best: 8th 2013
  • Average finish: 12
  • Event wins (1): Triplet Sprint (2011)

“Eighteen top-ten finishes (including five of the final six events in 2013) across her four years competing at Carson help explain the success she had. Averaging a 12th place finish in those four years is better than quite a few women who rank higher than her on this list.” – Brian Friend

23. Stacie Tovar

Stacie Tovar Games 2016 copy
  • 6 appearances
  • Best: 11th 2015
  • Average finish: 20
  • Event wins: none

“Stacie Tovar, the inventor of the white booty shirts, competed in 6 of the 7 years during the ‘Carson Era’. Tovar not only had longevity, she also had great finishes throughout the era which very few can say the same. She had a 14th and a 12th place finish in 2010 and 2012 respectively, but her 11th in 2015 is what makes her resume standout. As the field took enormous strides she had her best finish and that makes her stand out from the women behind her in the list.” – John Young

22. Margaux Alvarez

Margaux Alvarez Games 2015 copy
  • 4 appearances
  • Best: 9th 2015
  • Average finish: 23
  • Event wins (1): PTTM 1 2015

“Margaux Alvarez had an interesting career in the ‘Carson Era’, her first two years she finished 26th and 34th. Then her next two years she gets 9th and 17th. Massive improvement when the field itself also took a jump in ability. This makes her standout above the other women on the list in the same way Stacie Tovar stood out and her one event win in ‘Pedal to the Metal’ puts her above her on the list.” – John Young

21. Chyna Cho

Chyna Cho Games 2015 copy
  • 4 appearances
  • Best: 6th 2015
  • Average finish: 14
  • Event wins: none

“Chyna Cho is ‘Panchik-esque’ when it comes to consistency. Maybe not in terms of getting to the Games but once she is there that adjective fits well. In 2010, the first year of the era, Chyna got 18th place. She had a 3-year hiatus of making the Games and many would write her off as just not fit enough anymore, or the field has passed her up. Then she finished 15th, 6th and 17th from 2014-2016. Chyna is also a clinician at rope climbs, one of the best in the whole CrossFit world. Don’t believe me? Go watch her do ‘Tommy V’.” – John Young

20. Anna Tobias

Anna Tobias Games 2015 copy
  • 4 appearances
  • Best: 9th 2013
  • Average finish: 16
  • Event wins (3): Beach 2014, Sandbag 2015, Rope Chipper 2016

“Tobias showed up at the Games in 2013 already an Olympic Gold Medalist (sailing 2008, laser radial class). She was a fierce competitor at the Games, often notching top finishes on the most grueling events which demanded grit in addition to fitness: sixth on ‘Row 2’, fifth on ‘Burden Run’, seventh on ‘Naughty Nancy’ being three such examples from 2013 alone.” – Brian Friend

19. Allessandra Pichelli

Allessandra Pichelli Games 2016 copy
  • 4 appearances
  • Best: 4th 2013
  • Average finish: 17
  • Event wins (2): Legless 2013, 100% 2016

“Pichelli stacks up similarly to Tobias in the ‘Carson Era’, however, her fourth place finish in 2013 is what gives her the nod. Not only does Pichelli boasts that finish, she also gave us one of the most memorable moments at the Games in an event called ‘Legless’. When all of the women were struggling, Pichelli resorted to kipping her legless rope climbs and this technique is still used today.” – John Young

18. Brooke Wells

Brooke Wells Games 2015 copy
  • 2 appearances
  • Best: 6th 2016
  • Average finish: 11
  • Event wins (1): Ranch Deadlift Ladder 2016

“Entering the Games late in this era, Wells made the most of it with finishes of 16th and then 6th. Four top-tens, including two third place event finishes showed glimmers of her future potential as a rookie. Winning the second event in 2016, and then nine more top-ten finishes to boot in her second season laid the foundation for a tremendous career to come.” – Brian Friend

17. Kari Pearce

Kari Pearce Games 2016 copy
  • 2 appearances
  • Best: 5th 2016
  • Average finish: 13
  • Event wins (2): Murph and the Separator 2016

Kari Pearce only has two appearances in the ‘Carson Era’, but she made the most of it with a 21st and then a 5th place finish in 2016. She showed amazing improvement and established the groundwork for what would become a very successful career. She had two very different event wins in ‘Murph’ and the ‘Separator’ both in 2016. She is also arguably the greatest athlete period in the movement of handstand push-ups and all of this justifies her being this high on the list.” – John Young

16. Talayna Fortunato

Talayna Fortunato Games 2012
  • 3 appearances
  • Best: 3rd 2012
  • Average finish: 14
  • Event wins (3): O Course and Broad Jump 2012, Cinco 2 2013

“A short career marked by two extremely solid performances in 2012 and 2013, Fortunato was one of those athletes that had a little bit of almost everything, with the top-end strength being the one thing that prevented her from taking back-to-back 2nd place finishes those years. She missed those back-to-back runner ups by a total of 14 points across those two seasons despite being 3rd and then 5th.” – Brian Friend

Ranks 15 counting down to one coming soon. 

**If you like the contributions of John Young during this article please consider buying him a cup of coffee, all proceeds will go to him**

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Brian Friend

Brian stumbled upon CrossFit in the Fall of 2013. He has been a writer, data analyst, content creator, commentator, and broadcast coordinator. He's worked at a majority of the largest CrossFit competitions over the last three seasons, is a regular guest on the Sevan Podcast, and has been amongst the leading sports analysts in the sport in recent years. He has a passion for advancing the sport of CrossFit, and spreading the CrossFit methodology, by living it out in both his personal and professional life.


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