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6 Inspiring Women Who Quietly Qualified for Semifinals (Unofficially)


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • Kelsey Kiel and five more CrossFit Games vets just quietly qualified (unofficially) for Semifinals. Check out who the others were ⬇️ ⬇️

  • Big lifts bring us to our feet and inspire us to get stronger. Today, we look back at some of our favorite big lifts from the past.

  • Charley McAvoy and Sage Bergener are taking on the “San Diego 100” just months after cancer surgery and chemo.


“[L]ife doesn't stop and this isn't going to be my identity. I'm just going to keep being me. Keep doing what I do. And this is just another thing that's kind of coming along with me. It's not me.” - Sage Bergener on her boyfriend, Charley McAvoy’s mindset following his cancer diagnosis and chemo


Credit: @livbehindthelenses / Instagram

Of Moms and Masters Athletes: 6 Inspiring Women Who Just (Unofficially) Qualified for the CrossFit Semifinals

Qualifying for the CrossFit Semifinals is no easy feat. 

  • You could even argue that earning an invitation to Semifinals in the most competitive regions of the world – North America West and East, Europe, and Oceania – is just as hard as it was to qualify for the CrossFit Games 10 years ago.

And while we generally pay attention mostly to the top of the leaderboard, it’s worth noting some great performances by veteran women who are fitter than ever after more than a decade of CrossFit and who have now (unofficially) punched their Semifinals ticket.

Here are six CrossFit vets who showed up big time in Quarterfinals:

Jamie Hagiya: 39th in North America West

Jamie Hagiya, 39, started competing in CrossFit 11 years ago in 2013. She knocked on the door at the California Regional for three seasons before breaking through and qualifying for the CrossFit Games in 2016.

The owner of Torrance Training Lab, Hagiya, once known for her pure strength, competed at the Games again in 2018 with a team, but then it seemed she shifted her focus away from high-level competition. And in some ways, from fitness altogether.

In fact, during the pandemic, Hagiya found herself doing very little fitness. Her diet fell apart, and she was incredibly open on social media about packing 20 pounds onto her 5-foot-2 frame. 

  • “I’m a normal person. I like to eat good food and socialize with my family with food. Things always revolve around food, and just because I competed at the Games, I’m no different than anyone else. I still have to work hard to find that balance,” she told the Morning Chalk Up during the pandemic.

Even though Hagiya’s social media today often shows her goofing around with a basketball or attempting circus-type strength tricks, her Quarterfinals result clearly suggests she has also been finding the time to train hard.

She admitted she was even surprised by her result.

  • “I’m literally in shock and don’t believe it. I was only hoping to make the top 200 in my age group of 35-39. When my coach called me last night to say I made Semis I was speechless,” she said, adding that she has only been training hard for the last six months.

She added: “If [I get an invite], it’s in my backyard here in Carson, and the last time I was there was the 2016 Games, so that’s kinda cool and really hard to pass up. I don’t know if I’ll ever make it again as an individual, so it looks like I’ll accept.”


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2024 CrossFit Games Quarterfinals Leaderboards (unofficial, as of 2 p.m. PT, April 24, 2024)

  • North America East
    1. Jeffrey Adler (20) | Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr (6)
    2. Roman Khrennikov (32) | Alexis Raptis (23)
    3. Jayson Hopper (35) | Emma Lawson (25)
    4. Austin Hatfield (44) | Danielle Brandon (46)
    5. Dallin Pepper (52) | Paige Powers (64)

  • North America West
    1. Patrick Vellner (25) | Alex Gazan (24)
    2. Justin Medeiros (43) | Emily Rolfe (33)
    3. Brandon Luckett (44) | Abigail Domit (35)
    4. Samuel Kwant (46) | Arielle Loewen (44)
    5. Chris Ibarra (51) | Rebecca Fuselier (73)

  • Europe
    1. Jonne Koski (24) | Gabriela Migala (21)
    2. Victor Hoffer (49) | Laura Horvath (38)
    3. Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson (57) | Manon Angonese (55)
    4. Lazar Dukic (69) | Emma Tall (57)
    5. Moritz Fiebig (82) | Emma McQuaid (60)

  • Oceania
    1. Ricky Garard (11) | Madeline Sturt (13)
    2. Jay Crouch (11) | Grace Walton (20)
    3. Bayley Martin (26) | Daisy McDonald (47)
    4. Ben Fowler (41) | Briony Challis (51)
    5. Zac Thomas (62) | Julia Hannaford (52)

  • Asia 
    1. Ivan Kukartsev (23) | Seher Kaya (13)
    2. Anton Yakovlev (44) | Seungyeon Choi (21)
    3. Morteza Sedaghat (50) | Dawon Jung (22)
    4. Mevlut Agir (76) | Evie Hollis (26)
    5. Ruslan Miftakhov (82) | Anastasiya Dodonova (28)

  • South America
    1. Agustin Richelme (23) | Victoria Campos (31)
    2. Joao Pedro Barcelos (30) | Andreia Pinheiro (37)
    3. Kaylan Souza (33) | Amanda Fusuma (62)
    4. Bruno Marins (33) | Emily Andrade (63)
    5. Guilherme Malheiros (61) | Gabriella Luque (82)

  • Africa
    1. Kaelan Henry (12) | Christina Livaditakis (14)
    2. Ruan Duvenage (19) | Gemma Rader (17)
    3. Callum Deeble (36) | Dina Swift (41)
    4. Michael Van Tonder (40) | Gilmari Reyneke (47)
    5. Darren Zurnamer (41) | Reegan Finkel (54)

  • Reminder: The top 40 men and women will qualify for Semifinals in each region. For full age-group leaderboards, refer to the CrossFit Games site.

  • See Morning Chalk Up's full Quarterfinals coverage and learn all the details about qualifying for the next stage of the 2024 CrossFit Games season.

🚨 Update on Missing QF Leaderboard Scores: Brazilian athlete Larissa Cunha chimed in on social media yesterday with an explanation for her “0” score for Workout 1 on the Quarterfinals leaderboard. From her post, translated via Google Translate:

  • “A summary of what's happening. Due to copyright [because of] the background music, my video on YouTube was blocked and CrossFit was unable to access it during the Quarterfinals competition.”

  • “I received an email yesterday warning me that my 24.1 score had been invalidated. The video is now unlocked and CrossFit has access to the link.”

  • “I sent an email with evidence that the video had been made and posted before the deadline and that the problem was a technical failure on YouTube that blocked it. I am aware that more athletes from other regions are going through a similar situation and have had their scores reset. I'm waiting for answers from CrossFit. I will update you with any news.”

Madrid Championship X 2: There will be two editions of the Madrid Championship in 2024. First, the MAD Fitness Festival will take place June 28-30 at the Quijote Arena in Ciudad Real, Spain, then the Mad Fittest Cup on November 22-24 at the Centro Deportivo Municipal Gallur, Madrid, Spain.

👑🏆 TYR Wodapalooza’s LatAm Cup is Expanding: In 2024, the Second Annual TYR WZA LatAm Cup will include 10 events in 10 countries, culminating in the final championship at WZA Miami in January 2025.

🎟️ 🎟️ CrossFit Asia Semifinal: The Far East Throwdown, the 2024 CrossFit Asia Semifinal, will take place May 17-19 at the BEXCO Exhibition and Convention Center in Busan, South Korea. Tickets are available now!

✍️📋 Rogue Invitational 2024 Volunteer Applications: In case you missed the announcement, the Rogue Invitational is going international in 2024, and you can be there, behind the scenes, for all the action in Aberdeen, Scotland. Get more information and apply now. 

ICYMI: How to build health practitioner referral networks for CrossFit gym owners.


Credit: Ava Kitzi

Big Lift Energy: Our Favorite Big Lifts for the Recent Past 

Fans know that at CrossFit competitions, the big lifts often bring the biggest cheers, the most hype, and some of our most cherished sports moments. 

We enjoy watching the athletes tested in every way, but nothing gets a crowd on its feet faster than an athlete expertly moving a heavy barbell for a one-rep max or a complex. 

  • We have vivid memories from the CrossFit Games, as there have often been such tests of strength, but we also see them in off-season competitions like TYR Wodapalooza, the Dubai Fitness Championship, and the Rogue Invitational, where big lifters are often allowed to shine. 

Here are (only some) of our favorite big lifts from the recent past:

Sam Dancer and Brooke Wells (2016 CrossFit Games Ranch Deadlift Ladder)

In 2016, the Ranch Deadlift Ladder was a retest from 2009. The structure was the same, with athletes moving through the barbells one at a time, getting as far (and as heavy) as possible in 30-second increments. 

  • The weights were heavier in 2016 than in 2009, but two athletes cleared the ladder: Sam Dancer and Brooke Wells. 


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Credit:  @sage burgener / Instagram

Don’t Call It a Comeback: Charley McAvoy Training for 100 Mile Race Only Months After Cancer Surgery

One softball size mass and 100 lesions were removed from endurance athlete Charley McAvoy last November. 

  • Now, just a few months post-op, he and his girlfriend, Sage Burgener, are already training for a 100-mile running race set for June. 

How It Started

McAvoy, 44, is a strong and healthy individual who grew up playing sports, doing triathlons, CrossFit, and more, for many years. 

So when he started having some strange stomach issues, he thought nothing of it and continued his training. But the persistent discomfort brought him to a doctor who, after several misdiagnoses found out there was a “softball size mass” in his intestines. 

  • “Doctors started doing tests and found out it was a gastrointestinal stromal tumor,” McAvoy tells Morning Chalk Up in an interview. “They prescribed chemotherapy right away, and I did that for about eight months.” 

The chemotherapy ended up shrinking the tumor, and then doctors planned on a non-invasive surgery to remove the rest of the cancer. 

But the four-hour surgery turned into almost an eight-hour procedure that left McAvoy with a scar from his pubic bone to the bottom of his chest.

The doctors removed the cancerous mass, along with 100 lesions and his appendix. He also had work done on his bladder and had a bowel resection. 

“We were out of the hospital in about five days. Which was really fast for what had happened and I kind of played by the rules for six weeks of what they asked me to and then just started putting the pieces back together.”


Celebrating a PR, hosting a fundraiser, this, that, or otherwise? Send us a tip.

  • 🎂Happy birthday to Andrea Solberg and Bailey Meraviglia.

  • Nice work to Ricardo of CrossFit Complex in Mexico for getting after it on a Sunday.

  • 🏋️‍♀️Congratulations to 16-year-old Yezo from Brazil on his 120-kilo/264-pound snatch.

  • Congratulations to Steph from Maia CrossFit in New Zealand on her first ring muscle-up.

  • 🫶Great job to Ivy and her dad from Deka CrossFit in Canada on their hard work and for getting through Quarterfinals together.