FitFest 2023 Teams Announced: A First Look

November 3, 20233 min read

Image Credit: FitFest Instagram

Earlier today FitFest announced the three team captains for their Elite Athlete Showcase event to take place in the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, United Kingdom on December 8-10. Billed as the “Ultimate Fitness Festival”, the event will feature some of the best CrossFit athletes on the competition floor in team format workouts for two days.

Soon after the announcement of the captains (Danielle Brandon, Emma Lawson and Ella Wunger), the three woman reportedly selected their respective teams through a draft. Here are the teams that were announced.

Emma LawsonDanielle BrandonElla Wunger
Jennifer MuirArielle LoewenKelsey Kiel
Lucy McGonigleThuri HelgadottirAlex Gazan
Brent FikowskiBjörgvin Karl GudmundssonPatrick Vellner
Nick MathewJayson HopperJelle Hoste
Enrico ZenoniDallin PepperJack Farlow

We dug into the B.Friendly Stats database to take a quick look at some of the facts regarding the three teams: 

TeamsIndy Games XPTotal Games XPProficiencyAverage Age
Team Lawson13 appearances17 appearances3M / 2G / 1W23.8
Team Brandon30 appearances33 appearances3M /3G / 0W27.2
Team Wunger13 appearances20 appearances1M / 1G / 4W26.8

Individual Games Appearances

In a landslide, Team Brandon has 30 total elite individual Games appearances to their credit, while the other two teams have less than half, checking in at 13 each. 

Total Games Appearances

When you factor in teenage and team experience, the other two teams are bolstered a little bit. Team Lawson gets a boost from 13 to 17, still bringing up the rear. Team Wunger adds seven, including the only 6 team appearances from any of the teams (Kiel with 5, Vellner with 1). Team Brandon adds three teenage appearances (and championships) thanks to Dallin Pepper. 

There is still a big discrepancy from Team Brandon to the other two, but it’s a little smaller than if only the teenage and team appearances were not considered.


This is the area in which B.Friendly Stats helps the most, in identifying which of the three big classifications (Monostructural, Weight Lifting, Gymnastics), each athlete excels the most at. 

Of the 18 athletes competing, there are only five who have a bias towards Weightlifting, and four of them are found on “Team Wunger”. Should a weight lifting specific test or event appear, keep an eye on them. 

The other two teams are therefore primarily composed of Monostructural and Gymnastics specialists*.

*Note that many of these athletes are actually quite good at most things, but these are the areas they are best at throughout their careers. 

What Does It All Mean?

Quite frankly, nothing yet. We don’t really know the format of the showcase event, and therefore won’t know whether any of this matters at all. But it is fun to look at in the build up to an event that is shaping up to be unique amongst the current existing offseason competitions. 

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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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