Does Dave Castro’s “Triple Crown” Have Any Merit To It?

November 21, 202310 min read

Image Credit: Athlete’s Eye Photography

On Dave Castro’s “Week in Review” this week he brought up the concept of a “Triple Crown”. This is not a new idea for himself, nor for many other people in the space. However if there is a person in the position to bring something like this to life, with meaning behind it, he’s as good a candidate as anyone because of his job and influence, but not because of his, or his team’s understanding of what he’s suggesting. Let’s start by looking backwards and see how this would have played out from 2018 through 2022 (5 years). 

We will, however, include the Dubai Fitness Championship, which not only still do exist, but exist as this name, not the one Dave used in his video. Although it is not really how I personally would have done it, we will use Dave’s model of only considering the top-20 from the CrossFit Games each season: 

2018 (Pre-Rogue Invitational)

2018CF GamesDubaiWZA (2019)
Mathew Fraser11
Patrick Vellner21
Lukas Hogberg3
Brent Fikowski4
Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson52
Noah Ohlsen63
Cole Sager7
Rasmus Andersen8
Willy Georges93
Cody Anderson10
Scott Panchik11
Ben Smith12
Alex Anderson1311
Dean Linder Leighton14
Logan Collins15
Adrian Mundwiler16
Lukas Esslinger17
James Newbury18
Saxon Panchik195
Nicholas Urankar20
2018CF GamesDubaiWZA (2019)
Tia-Clair Toomey1
Laura Horvath233
Katrin Davidsdottir31
Kara Saunders4
Annie Thorisdottir535
Kari Pearce62
Kristin Holte7
Brooke Wells8
Kristi Eramo9
Cassidy Lance McWherter10
Jamie Greene112
Tennil Beuerlein12
Camille Leblanc-Bazinet13
Alessandra Pichelli14
Amanda Barnhart15
Bethany Shadburne165
Ehea Schuerch17
Mekenzie Riley183
Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault19
Madeline Sturt20

Conclusion: Not a single athlete did all three events that season. Seven men and seven women competed in two of the three. The lowest point totals would have belonged to: 

  • Mat Fraser with 2 points
  • Katrin Davidsdottir with 4 points

2019 (First year of Rogue)

Unlike Dave’s suggestion, we will factor in any athlete who did the Games, made the top-20, and did at least two of the three offseason majors:

2019CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2020)
Mat Fraser11
Noah Ohlsen283
Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson34
Scott Panchik47
James Newbury5
Jacob Heppner6
Matt McLeod7
Adrian Mundwiler88
Saxon Panchik94
Will Moorad10
Cole Sager113
Travis Mayer126192
Samuel Kwant13
Logan Collins1410
Chandler Smith155
Patrick Vellner16221
Lukas Hogberg1718
Joshua Wichtrup18
Elliot Simmonds1910
Casper Gammelmark201621
2019CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2020)
Tia-Clair Toomey111
Kristin Holte254
Jamie Greene35
Katrin Davidsdottir44
Kari Pearce562
Haley Adams6
Amanda Barnhart7
Bethany Shadburne8
Thuri Helgadottir9
Danielle Brandon10
Annie Thorisdottir113
Carolyne Prevost12
Alessandra Pichelli137
Laura Horvath1419
Brooke Wells157
Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault168
Samantha Briggs173
Emily Rolfe186
Sara Sigmundsdottir19213
Emma McQuaid20

Conclusion: Four men are eligible from this year, they are Noah Ohlsen, Travis Mayer, Patrick Vellner, and Casper Gammelmark. Mayer and Vellner did all four, so we will drop their lowest total. That means the men’s “Triple Crown” results that year would be: 

  1. Pat Vellner – 5 Points (but that’s dropping the Games, which Castro may not like)
  2. Noah Ohlsen – 13 points
  3. Travis Mayer – 20 points (dropping Dubai)
  4. Casper Gammelmark – 57 points

There were also four women who would be eligible for this. Using the same model as the men these would have been the “Triple Crown” results that year:

  1. Tia-Clair Toomey – 3 points (perfect)
  2. Sara Sigmundsdottir – 6 points (but like Vellner would drop the Games)
  3. Kristin Holte- 11 points
  4. Kari Pearce – 13 points

2020 (Incomplete Data)

2020CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2021)
Mat Fraser1N/AN/A
Samuel Kwant2N/AN/A
Justin Medeiros3N/AN/A
Noah Ohlsen43N/AN/A
Jeffrey Adler5N/AN/A
Chandler Smith64N/AN/A
Jonne Koski712N/AN/A
Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson82N/AN/A
Patrick Vellner91N/AN/A
Samuel Cournoyer10N/AN/A
Bayden Brown11N/AN/A
Jacob Heppner128N/AN/A
Roman Khrennikov13N/AN/A
Tim Paulson14N/AN/A
Brent Fikowski15N/AN/A
Alexandre Caron167N/AN/A
Scott Tetlow17N/AN/A
Jay Crouch18N/AN/A
Travis Mayer19N/AN/A
Cole Sager2011N/AN/A
2020CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2021)
Tia-Clair Toomey11N/AN/A
Katrin Davidsdottir213N/AN/A
Kari Pearce3N/AN/A
Haley Adams48N/AN/A
Brooke Wells510N/AN/A
Kristin Holte69N/AN/A
Amanda Barnhart77N/AN/A
Kara Saunders83N/AN/A
Kristi Eramo O’Connell911N/AN/A
Andrea Nisler10N/AN/A
Carol-Ann Reason-Thibault11N/AN/A
Jamie Simmonds (Greene)12N/AN/A
Dani Speegle13N/AN/A
Karin Freyova14N/AN/A
Danielle Brandon1515N/AN/A
Kristine Best16N/AN/A
Melina Rodriguez17N/AN/A
Gabriela Migala18N/AN/A
Emma McQuaid19N/AN/A
Bethany Shadburne20N/AN/A

Conclusion: Neither Dubai nor Wodapalooza happened this season, so we’re left with only two possible data points. Using them, we have eight men and nine women eligible, the top three for each would have been: 

Men Top-Three:

  1. Noah Ohlsen – 7 points
  2. Chandler Smith- 10 points (wins tiebreaker with better finish at the Games)
  3. Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson – 10 points 

*Pat Vellner also had 10 points, but loses to both Smith and Gudmundsson based on Games finish.

Women Top-Three:

  1. Tia-Clair Toomey – 2 points (perfect)
  2. Kara Saunders – 11 points
  3. Haley Adams – 12 points


2021CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2022)
Justin Medeiros11
Patrick Vellner221
Brent Fikowski3
Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson44
Saxon Panchik5108
Jonne Koski6
Guilherme Malheiros75
Alex Vigneault81616
Lazar Dukic9122
Noah Ohlsen10
Scott Panchik119
Travis Mayer126
Jeffrey Adler1334
Cole Sager14114
Andre Houdet153013
Royce Dunne16
Bayden Brown17
Henrik Haapalainen18176
Jayson Hopper19711
Will Moorad2014
2021CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2022)
Tia-Clair Toomey11
Laura Horvath241
Annie Thorisdottir33
Kristin Holte462
Haley Adams55
Gabriela Migala633
Mallory O’Brien78
Kristi Eramo O’Connell814
Amanda Barnhart910
Katrin Davidsdottir1015
Danielle Brandon1111
Emma McQuaid1291
Thuri Helgadottir1317
Arielle Loewen14133
Emily Rolfe151689
Emma Cary1612
Jacqueline Dahlstrom17205
Baylee Rayl18
Emma Tall197
Brooke Wells20

Conclusion: In the best data set we have yet, nine men and seven women would be eligible. Rolfe is the only one of those 16 who did all four, and will therefore drop her worst performance. Note that it’s basically an even split between athletes who have Dubai compared to Wodapalooza as their third competition, which is why we need to include that event (quite frankly it’s obvious it should be included) in our evaluations. 

Men’s Top-Three: 

  1. Pat Vellner – 5 points
  2. Jeffrey Adler – 20 points
  3. Saxon Panchik – 23 points *

*Lazar Dukic also had 23 but would have lost to Saxon on the Games placement tiebreaker.

Women’s Top-Three: 

  1. Laura Horvath – 12 points
  2. Kristin Holte – 12 points (wins tiebreaker based on better Games finish)
  3. Gabriela Migala – 12 points


2022CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2023)
Justin Medeiros11
Roman Khrennikov252
Ricky Garard3101
Samuel Kwant48
Jeffrey Adler53
Patrick Vellner643
Jayson Hopper77
Lazar Dukic82012
Björgvin Karl Gudmundsson96
Guilherme Malheiros1011
Saxon Panchik1116
Noah Ohlsen129
Cole Sager1313
Nick Mathew14126
Jonne Koski15114
Brent Fikowski1634
Willy Georges17
Travis Mayer18
Dallin Pepper197
Spencer Panchik20
2022CF GamesRogueDubaiWZA (2023)
Tia-Clair Toomey1
Mallory O’Brien2
Laura Horvath31
Danielle Brandon49
Brooke Wells5
Emma Lawson63
Kara Saunders77
Gabriela Migala85
Haley Adams9
Alexis Raptis108
Arielle Loewen1110
Emma McQuaid1213
Kristi Eramo O’Connell13
Amanda Barnhart146
Jacqueline Dahlstrom1517
Lucy Campbell16
Dani Speegle17122
Ellie Turner184
Matilde Garnes19142
Karin Freyova201

Conclusion: Seven men were eligible this year, but only two women competed in at least three of these. 

Men’s Top-Three

  1. Roman Khrennikov – 9 points
  2. Pat Vellner – 13 points
  3. Ricky Garard – 14 points

Women’s Top-Two

  1. Dani Speegle – 31 points
  2. Matilde Garnes – 35 points

Does the Triple Crown system have merit to it?

The answer is that it certainly could, but as we’ve discussed with other models that have been put out, retroactive application of “new” models is very limiting. For this to work it needs to be known, announced, and incentivized for athletes to want to chase the “Triple Crown” title. 

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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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