Unfortunately, Scott Panchik will not return to his 10the Game appearance. He was injured during event 3 at Syndicate Crown, an event in which he expressed concern over the length of the rope which is exactly what caused his injury hours later. CrossFit HQ has officially responded to Panchik’s injury.
Scott Panchik withdrew from his CrossFit semifinal after sustaining an injury to his “good knee” during event 3 in Knoxville, Tennessee. The workout in question was a repeat of 2014 Regional Event 5 with legless rope climbs and back-and-forth runs. This workout was one of 2 that CrossFit had scheduled to include in every semifinal competition around the world.
According to Panchik, the athletes were briefed on the day of the events early in the morning about training. “After seeing the amount of rope left on the competition floor, I verbally expressed my concern for the safety of the athletes in an event as fast as this,” Panchik wrote on his Instagram page.
Panchik went on to mention that at the Torian Pro, the Crossfit Semifinal in Oceania that started the same training hour earlier, the ropes were cut to keep any leftovers off the ground. “I was told there was nothing that could be done to change the strings and this is what was provided for use,” he continued.
“During the descent in round 3 or 4, my foot landed on the extra rope on the ground. That’s when I felt the snap in my “good” knee. I managed to finish the event hoping it wasn’t too bad. I spent the next 2-3 hours going in and out of the motions of medical tests, talking and praying with my wife,” Panchik revealed. Last year, Panchik battled an injured knee during the Games.
After 3 events Panchik was at 5the place, with a difference of one point with 4the place and 2 points to 3dr place. He was well on his way to qualifying for this year’s CrossFit Games.
You can see the event in question in the following video. It is possible to see many athletes struggling with the rope after landing, mainly with the equipment between their legs when switching to the running to and fro portion of the drill.
Men’s Singles Event 3 Heat 3 starts at 2:32:16
Although he announced his retirement last year, Panchik said he would continue to compete to create memories with his family (both brothers are competing in the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Championship Semifinal). Scott is part of this year’s Athlete Advisory Council.
Scott Panchik Full Explanation of Retirement and Injury
The amount of emotion coursing through my body has made this post difficult to write, but I still want to share what happened today.
At 7:30 am we were briefed on the day’s events. After seeing the amount of rope left on the competition floor, I verbally expressed my concern for the safety of the athletes in an event as fast as this.
I felt like I made a strong case with several examples of why this might be unsafe. There have been multiple notable injuries in the past at events like this. I also mentioned that the Torian Pro had already done this event and the rope cut keeping all the ropes off the ground.
I was told there was nothing that could be done to change the strings and this is what was provided to use.
Heading into the final series, it was obvious that every second would count in this training. During the descent in round 3 or 4, my foot landed on the extra rope on the ground. That’s when I felt the snap in my “good” knee. I managed to finish the event hoping it wasn’t too bad. I spent the next 2-3 hours in and out of the doctor, trying out moves, talking and praying with my wife.
During that time I went from one place to another too many times to know what to do. During the second series of men I told my wife that she was finished. We both cried, took a breather, but I still grabbed my wristbands and headed to the warm-up area. When my heat was called I went into the coral with the timing chip on my ankle and when we were called I made the decision to retreat.
Something I have never had to do in this sport.
I was fully prepared physically to compete this weekend. He was here to create memories with family, friends and competitors and prove that he is still one of the fittest men in the world.
Thank you to the fans, volunteers, and medical team for being a part of the ups and downs of the competition. Having you all on this wild ride with me will bring peace to this situation at some point.
Athletes support Panchik’s complaint
Some CrossFit athletes wrote on Scott Panchik’s Instagram page in support of his safety concerns.
Haley Adams- 6x Games Athlete and #GamesBound this year
“Exactly the same concerns here. Thinking of you and sending you good vibes. You are a legend.
Amanda Barnhart – 4x Athlete Games
“I asked about cutting the ropes last year and got the same answer. Sorry to hear this, Scott! You are a legend in this sport!”
dancing sam- 3x Athlete Games
“So lame. It really bothers me that the strings are on the ground nowadays, haven’t we learned? There is something that could be done. Get the tools and cut the damn ropes. It would take 20 minutes with a kitchen knife and duct tape. It makes me even more angry that you brought it up and nothing was done.”
Alec Smith- 3x Athlete Games
“I’m sorry to hear that. The extra rope on the ground was ridiculous. Heal fast. Hope to see you out there again next year.”
CrossFit responds to Scott Panchik’s injury and concerns
CrossFit has officially responded to Panchik’s expressed concerns regarding the event. The following statement is from CrossFit GM of Sport Justin Bergh.
“Scott is an extraordinary athlete, person and ambassador for the sport, and we are deeply saddened by his injury. As soon as we were notified, our team contacted Scott and the event director to determine what happened.
Unfortunately, Scott’s concerns about rope climbing didn’t reach CrossFit headquarters before the event. Ensuring a real-time escalation and dialogue channel for athletes during events was the reason we created the new competition liaison position this season, but there has clearly been a breakdown in this situation, and we need to better educate both athletes and athletes. and event officials on when and how to interact with the competition liaison.
The competition liaison position was announced in the Hopper that was sent out on May 18: ‘Competing athletes can request the competition liaison to assist them with communication with event organizers. Issues can include appeals, schedule discrepancies, requests for warm-up areas, safety issues, and concerns about the fairness of the competition.
In the future, we have passed on issues related to rope length to upcoming event organizers and instructed them to shorten the ropes if necessary for safety. We are also working to ensure that both organizers and athletes communicate with the competition liaison whenever they need to address future issues of this kind.”
The Hopper shipped May 18the in question can be viewed here. The role of the competitor liaison, according to the email, is “not to directly resolve disputes or issues, but rather to ensure that they are communicated to the appropriate party and resolved professionally.”
One of the main responsibilities of the competency liaison is to ensure that certain competency standards are adhered to. And one of them is “basic safety is observed on the competition floor and in the athletes’ warm-up area”.