Open Week 2: Danny Broflex vs B.K.G.
Open WOD 16.2 will feature Dan Bailey against Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson. Most of us know a little about Dan; he’s been part of the sport almost since the beginning. He took first place in the very first Open in 2011, and has competed at the Games every year in the Open era. Dan finished 6th in the 2011 Games, and since then has been a fixture near the top of the leaderboard, including:
- 2011: Open 1st, Games 6th
- 2012: Open 4th, Games 6th
- 2013: Open 20th, Games 8th
- 2014: Open 4th, Games 10th
- 2015: Open 12th, Games 4th
In other words, if you're looking for Dan, go out to the Games and find the Top 10. He'll be there. Dan is arguably a top 3 athlete in the history of this sport, and perhaps the most accomplished athlete to have never won the Games. It is difficult to imagine anyone not named Rich or maybe Ben being able to beat him head to head. And yet, his opponent in 16.2 outperformed Dan at the Games last year. Bjorgvin Karl Gudmundsson finished 3rd and denied Dan has first podium appearance. In other words, relative newcomer BKG has more podium appearances at the Games than Dan Bailey does. 2015 was BKG’s second games appearance after a 26th place finish in 2014. So while his resume is shorter, he should be a worthy opponent for Dan in 16.2. Let’s take a closer look at the athletes' performances over the past two years:
BKG grabbed a win in 14.2 and kept 14.4 close, showing well-developed gymnastics. But BKG was unable to match Dan's strength or capacity, and Dan ran away with 14.1, 14.3 and 14.5. 2014 Open results: Dan 4, BKG 1
We see a similar pattern in the Regionals. BKG was competitive in gymnastics events, taking the win in pullup-heavy Event 7, and posting a competitive handstand walk score. BKG also tied Dan in the snatch event, but again could not match Dan in capacity. 2014 Regionals results: Dan 5 wins, BKG 1 win. one tie
While Dan outperformed BKG at the Games, the broader test of fitness reveals some additional information. BKG beat Dan in the triple 3, showing superior aerobic capacity. BKG also took the 21-15-9 complex, continuing the trend of beating Dan in events with pull-ups, such as 14.2 and Regionals event 7. He also beat Dan in the muscle up biathlon and even beat him in the Sprint Carry. But that was it; Dan dominated everywhere else, especially on the very short, high intensity WODs. 2014 Games results: Dan 9 wins, BKG 4 wins.
2014 Season results: Dan 18 wins, BKG 6 wins, one tie.
This time around, BKG was far more competitive. He has sustained his advantage in 15.2, and also managed to significantly outperform Dan in 15.3, again demonstrating the aerobic capacity that enabled him to beat Dan in the Triple-3 at the 2014 Games. Dan had three runaway wins in the 2014 Open, but this time managed just one convincing victory, in 15.4. The other WODs were close. 2015 Open results: Dan 4, BKG 2.
Dan dominated BKG in "Randy", but BKG returned the favor in "Tommy V'. (Note: they did not compete head-to-head at Regionals). After that, Dan managed a few narrow victories, but for the first time, BKG outperformed Dan on a one-rep max. 2015 Regionals results: Dan 4 wins, BKG 3 wins.
These two were very close at the 2015 Games, as BKG finished just one place ahead of Dan. Dan's two wins in the sprint course gave him more head-t0-head wins over BKG, but those events awarded fewer points than the others. BKG crushed Dan (and the entire field) en route to a first-place finish in "Murph", and also beat Dan convincingly in the snatch ladder, though Dan out-lifted BKG in the clean and jerk. These two were about as close as possible at the 2015 Games, with BKG finishing just one place and 36 points ahead of Dan. 2015 Games results: Dan 7 wins, BKG 6 wins. BKG 3rd place, Dan 4th place.
2015 Season results: Dan 15 wins, BKG 11 wins.
it's too early to tell what the 2016 Season will bring for these athletes. BKG has been closing the gap on Dan since 2014, and outperformed him by 19 reps in 16.1, (324 to 305) displaying his advantage in pullups and the superior aerobic capacity that propelled him to an overall win in Murph. Whatever the 16.2 WOD is, these two elite athletes are likely to provide an inspirational demonstration for the rest of us. Good luck to them and to all who are participating.