After placing sixth at the 2012 CrossFit Games, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet, already one of the sport’s most popular athletes, arguably has more momentum than any athlete not named Samantha Briggs during this Games season.
With her striking good looks, impressive pound for pound strength, and infectious positive energy, Leblanc-Bazinet has become the unofficial female face of CrossFit. When women who aren’t familiar with CrossFit are asked if lifting weights will “make them bulky,” Leblanc-Bazinet’s physique, along with other top CrossFit athletes like Andrea Ager and Miranda Oldroyd, immediately change the perception of what strong women can look like.
So far, Leblanc-Bazinet has not yet finished in the top three at the annual CrossFit Games, a competition to find the fittest athletes on earth. Here are five reasons why Leblanc-Bazinet will change that this year and find herself on the podium at the completion of the 2013 CrossFit Games.
2013 CrossFit Games Open
Leblanc-Bazinet finished in second place worldwide in this year’s CrossFit Games Open, only trailing this year’s favorite to win the CrossFit Games, Samantha Briggs.
Much like the Games, the Open challenges many different aspects of an athlete’s fitness with strength, speed, coordination, and cardiovascular fitness weighing heavily on an athlete’s ability to perform well over the course of the Open’s five workouts. Finishing second overall is a feat in itself, but it was how Leblanc-Bazinet did it that was the most impressive.
Outside of a 27th place finish in 13.2, Leblanc-Bazinet didn’t finish lower than 9th on any Open workout – earning two second place finishes and one third place finish along the way. By comparison, former CrossFit Games champion Kristan Clever had three finishes outside of the top 20 and still found herself in fourth place overall for the 2013 Open.
During the Open, Leblanc-Bazinet, along with Briggs and Lindsay Bourdon performed far better than the rest of the pack. While a top finish in the Open does not guarantee a top finish in the CrossFit Games, Leblanc-Bazinet has to have a lot of confidence going into the Games after seeing how she stacked up to the rest of the world.
Fast gymnastics movements
Though it’s never been precisely measured, it’s well understood that Camille Leblanc-Bazinet has the fastest pull-ups among all elite CrossFit athletes.
This was made most clear Leblanc-Bazinet nearly completed three rounds of Fran during the 2013 Open’s FranRAP workout in 13.5, a feat that would only be topped by Lindsay Bourdon.
This weekend, Leblanc-Bazinet set two CrossFit world records at the Canada East regionals in events that emphasized gymnastics-type movements, in addition to barbell work.
In longer workouts, when gymnastics movements are included, Leblanc-Bazinet can either gain ground or distance herself from all other competitors.
Over the past year, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet has gone from being one of the strongest pound for pound CrossFit athletes to becoming one of the strongest female CrossFit athletes – period.
From attempting three rep max power cleans at 210 pounds, completing jerks at two times her body weight, and back squatting 300 pounds at a body weight of 130 pounds, Leblanc-Bazinet has hit huge milestones in her training this year.
While Leblanc-Bazinet might not be able to compete with the likes of Olympic hopeful Lindsay Valenzuela on raw strength numbers, it’s clear that overall strength will not be a limiting factor for Leblanc-Bazinet this year.
Mental focus and ability
When looking at Camille Leblanc-Bazinet’s performances at the 2013 Canada East Regionals, here’s what you see:
- Event 1: 1st place
- Event 2: 1st place
- Event 3: 2nd place
- Event 4: 2nd place
- Event 5: 1st place
- Event 6: 1st place
- Event 7: 1st place
Whether it’s a chipper, traditional CrossFit benchmark workout, or a set amount of work to complete, Leblanc-Bazinet excels across all timed workouts by staying focused on the task at hand, even when the scoring system changes.
You can count on Leblanc-Bazinet to always perform well in a workout because her abilities do not necessarily have a weakness when it comes to the “type” of workout she’s competing in. Whether it’s an AMRAP, chipper, or a simple couplet, she’s proven that she can perform at a high level for any type of workout.
After a second place finish at the 2013 CrossFit Games Open and a dominant first place finish at the 2013 Canada East Regionals, Camille Leblanc-Bazinet enters the CrossFit Games with as much momentum as anyone in the sport.
As the unofficial face of CrossFit who has also becoming one of the new examples of strength and fitness for the millennial generation, Leblanc-Bazinet is well-recognized, respected, easy on the eyes, and loved by fans in the CrossFit community.
CrossFit continues to become more mainstream with athletes from other sports. It would be a welcome sight to have an ambassador like Leblanc-Bazinet on the podium representing the new look of female athletes today alongside the other top Games performers.