One upon a time (well, now really), in a land far, far, away (Ontario, 3,401 miles from my home), lives a man. And this man is bloody marvellous at CrossFit. And this year he is gonna blow up the CrossFit Games. His name, is Patrick Vellner.
One of the most easy going, laid back, hard working, focused Crossfit athletes you will come across. A lifelong dedication to the pursuit of athletic excellence, first in gymnastics and now at CrossFit. And whilst doing this, he is also studying Chiropractic Medicine full time. Pretty impressive huh?
Oh yes, he is impressive.
A Games track record that is frankly, what dreams are made of. First competing as part of Team Crossfit Plateau 2 in 2015, he then returned as an individual competitor in 2016 where he placed on the podium in 3rd place. 2017 he placed 3rd again and in 2018 he came 2nd. So it’s no wonder that people are starting to think, is 2019 the year he wins?
And considering he is a chilled out kind of guy, there’s been quite a bit of drama following him for the last few years. His 3rd place win at The Crossfit Games 2017 was awarded to him a few days late whilst he was sat at his kitchen table (you can google why if you don’t already know). And at The CrossFit Games 2018 he injured himself with a less than delicate descent from the cargo nets during Event 5 - The Battleground. Despite a bruised lung and coughing up blood, he still managed to place 4th in the event.
2019 is starting to build momentum for Pat. Already he has demonstrated his dominance of a strong field, winning 1st place at the Wodapolooza CrossFit Sanctional and earning his place at the 2019 CrossFit Games. He doesn’t need to finish highly in The Open, his place is secure. In fact, it might be sensible to take his foot off the gas and then rebuild his fitness to peak again at The Games. But, that isn’t the way he does things. Always looking to improve and achieve a high seeding for the Games, so far his 2019 Open WODs have been a demonstration of speed, fitness and strength.
Pat Vellner “It’s comforting knowing I have a spot locked up. I won’t have to stress as much for redo’s or things like that”
(morning chalk up)
CrossFit Solid Ground
Patrick Vellner moved to Ontario a couple of years ago and continued his training at CrossFit Solid Ground. A super friendly, family feel box led by General Manager and Head Coach, Justin Tamane. Justin’s own career in CrossFit is pretty good too. He’s consistently been one of the top CrossFit athletes in Canada since 2015 and has a Fran time of 2:02 (12 seconds faster than Pat’s!). This is a box that understands what it takes to win at CrossFit.
But above all else, this is a box that prioritises health and wellbeing. Their website headline reads
“ Committed to helping people realise their potential”.
They strongly believe in creating foundations that result in long term health and longevity in the sport. A perfect alignment with Greg Glassman’s vision for CrossFit. Of course there is a competitive spirit in the box, but excellent technique, nutrition and looking after your body is of the upmost importance at Solid Ground.
The CrossFit community spirit is strong here and CrossFit Solid Ground encourages people from all walks of life to get involved with the club. They regularly celebrate the successes of their members, whatever their fitness levels and achievements.
I just absolutely love their mission statement:
WELCOME TO CROSSFIT SOLID GROUND
We are building a contagious atmosphere that promotes self-improvement and mutual support. With the use of the CrossFit model, our goal is to create an inclusive atmosphere that brings elite athletes together with weekend warriors, all in the pursuit of their own personal best. Regardless of your current fitness level each class is designed to challenge you physically and mentally. We have no ellipticals, no exclusion, and no excuses
If you didn’t hear of Wodaplooza at the start of the year, you must have had your head up a wall ball. It is the most incredible festival of CrossFit, held in the dazzling sunshine of Miami, right on the beach front. And now that The Games sanctional qualifying system is in place for 2019, the prize was even more alluring.
The support for Pat at Wodapolooza was incredible as always. One of the crowd’s favourite athletes and this year wearing his Special Edition, CrossFit Solid Ground, Wodapolooza T-shirts. The neon logo fitting in perfectly with the psychedelic theme of the event.
Of course, winning events is not easy but there was no real question about who was going to win the competition, and the individual event results show a dominant, well rounded athlete came to play and took the win.
So What’s Next?
We are all very excited and expect great things to happen for Pat this year. But as we all know, CrossFit can be an unpredictable arena to operate in. His track record is incredible and current form is electric, all signs are good. I know that here at WODMYLIFE, we will be cheering him on at The Games, and hopefully we will get chance to see him in action in a few other competitions before then. We will be wearing our Wodapalooza Special Edition Solid Ground shirts proudly and hope you will too.