The move to Madison gave Dave Castro some new options in terms of programming the CrossFit Games this year. From the Run-Swim-Run that began and ended in the venue to the Sprint O-Course in North Park to the Cyclocross event in Quann Park, Alliant Energy Center provided some new elements that could be done on premises.
No longer did Castro have to shuttle the athletes to the beach for a swim or to Camp Pendleton for an obstacle course. Other than a couple miles and a swim, everything was inside the gates of the venue. From a spectator standpoint, that was great.
After being at the Games in person and seeing North Park and Quann up close, it left us wondering, “what could Dave do with these next year?”
So that’s what we’re doing…here are what we think Dave could do for the 2018 CrossFit Games.
Tough Mudder X Style Race in Quann Park
The Cyclocross event in Quann Park was a 1.5-mile path with a lot of twists and turns along rolling hills covered in grass and gravel paths. Having the athletes bike on it was great, but what if the Sprint O-Course from this year is transformed into a longer Tough Mudder X style event.
The Tough Mudder X event just last month was a one-mile course with 10 obstacles and 10 “workout zones” (think sandbag carries, burpees, pull-ups, etc). That type of event could easily be designed in Quann Park. The Games could even have qualification races like Tough Mudder X with a final event to crown the champion.
The Tough Mudder X was about a 15-minute event, right up the alley of a lot of the Games events.
Road Bike Race on Streets of Madison
We all thought the bike race this year was going to be on trails. Of course, we were wrong. But seeing how well the Run-Swim-Run event worked by starting in the Boulevard right outside the Coliseum and Vendor Village, what if instead of running, a road bike race was done instead?
Seeing how the city of Madison embraced the CrossFit Games and its fans along with the fact that Madison hosts an Ironman event each year, it is very likely that closing off some roads to allow for the athletes to ride their bikes through the streets would be welcomed.
And check out the bike map of the 2017 Wisconsin Ironman…it goes right past Alliant Energy Center! This would not only be a cool event for the athletes and CrossFit fans, but it would bring the Games to the rest of the Madison community.
It doesn’t have to be 112 miles, but a good 30-mile bike ride through the streets of Madison would be awesome. Or heck, turn it into a triathlon with the bike/run transition near the start/finish line area.
As we mentioned earlier, the start and finish line of the Run-Swim-Run event was right in the heart of the venue. What we didn’t mention is that the course was adjacent to Quann Park. Fans going to watch the Cyclocross had to cross the street where the Run-Swin-Run was taking place.
Castro could easily make a mid-distance running event that stays almost completely within the venue and combines road running with some cross-country such that fans could line up along most of the course.
Bring the Zeus Rig to North Park
The North Park venue was split into two sections. Half of it was (literally) tons of sand for the Sprint O-Course and the other half was the turf field for the Madison Triplet, Strongman’s Fear and a lot of the Teens and Masters events.
The half for the Sprint O-Course was unused for the last two days of the weekend leaving a lot of space vacant. The field side was much shorter, only 150 feet or so, and did not include a pull-up rig or barbell throughout the week.
If Castro expands the field to cover the entire space and turn the finish line 90 degrees, the length of the field is longer and could handle more elements. Rogue Fitness could dust off the Zeus Rig and install it on the field to add some more types of events outside.
It would feel a lot more like the soccer stadium at StubHub, but in a much more intimate setting.
What do you think? What could Castro do next year with the Alliant Energy Center? What would you be psyched to see in 2018?