Pontefract athletes triumph in European Championships.
Millie Goldspink lifts weights at the European Crossfit Championships.
Credit Nero – RXdPhotography
Curtis Dixon, 31, came second in the men’s 18-35 category, denied the top spot by a tiebreaker against a competitor 12-years his junior, and Millie Goldspink, 19, came first in the women’s competition. Remarkably they both train together at the same gym in Pontefract – Strong 101. Curtis, an HGV driver, got the fitness bug three years ago but it wasn’t until he joined Strong 101 12 months ago that he realised crossfit was something he was particularly good at.
Millie Goldspink taking part in the European Crossfit Championships. Credit Nero – RXdPhotography
He now trains every night after work and twice on Saturdays.
He said: “I’d only ever done a bit of running before I took up crossfit and I soon became obsessed by it.” “I started doing a few workouts and was getting good scores and someone suggested I should take part in competitions.” To win one of the coveted 45 places at the final of their respective category at the European Championship, Curtis and Millie took part in filmed trials over three weeks, up against hundreds of other athletes.
Curtis Dixon taking part in one of the crossfil challenges at the European Crossfit Championship. Credit Nero – RXdPhotography
Curtis came 11th and Millie sixth out of 45.
The championships were held over three gruelling days at Five Lakes Arena in Essex. Day one included a 1km sprint followed by paddling a board across an 800m lake. As they emerged, a further 1km run carrying a 25kg sandbag was unexpectedly sprung on them.
Day two was a selection of crossfit bodyweight movements and the maximum lift challenge – Curtis managed 105kg, his personal best.
Curtis Dixon paddles across the 800m lake during the European Crossfit Championship.
Credit Nero – RXdPhotography
Only the top 15 athletes went through to the final day with events including a one-mile run. Curtis said: “After leading the entire weekend from event one, I came up short and tied for first place.” He posted on his Facebook page: “Second fittest in Europe isn’t bad for a lazy truck driver in his thirties, no coach, no game plan, all from the 5:30pm class after work, and I’m immensely proud of what I’ve done.”
Millie has been a regular gym goer since she was 15, she puts in around four hours of intense training per day, fitting it in around her studies at university. She said: “Over the years I’ve competed in smaller competitions and had podiumed but this is the cherry on top. “It is a huge competition and ever since I qualified I knew I had a chance to win.
“After all the hours I’ve put in I’ve reaped the rewards. “However, this is only a small stepping stone, there is definitely much more to come.” Strong 101 owner and coach Gaz Firm said: “Everyone at the gym is really proud of Curtis and Millie’s achievements.
“Both have worked really hard in classes and putting in their own extra work at the gym.
“The community environment at the gym brings the best out of people and pushes them to new limits they never thought they could reach.”
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