Veeam Topples VMware In Channel Madness: Round 1 Results

A few channel chiefs made up ground to clinch come-from-behind victories in Round 1 voting of the 2021 CRN Channel Madness Tournament of Chiefs. Here’s how it all played out.

A week of Round 1 voting in the 2021 CRN Channel Madness Tournament of Chiefs has come to a close, and the winners are celebrating in the locker rooms.

While many channel chiefs came out strong to take early leads, a few contests came down to the wire. Here’s a look at Round 1 results and who’s moving on to the Solutions 16.

Two closely watched matchups played out in the Cloud region, where 2020 Channel Madness Champion Kevin Rooney of Veeam was struggling against VMware’s Sandy Hogan. But a late surge gave Rooney the win with 56 percent of the vote to Hogan’s 44 percent, so Rooney’s quest to defend his crown lives on into Round 2.

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Meanwhile, Nextiva’s Eric Martorano pulled out an impressive come-from-behind win, bringing in 58 percent of the vote in his battle with Doug Yeum of Amazon Web Services, who garnered 42 percent.

The closest match of the contest played out in the Security region, where tournament rookie Todd Meister of Zscaler orchestrated a come-from-behind victory over Kendra Krause of Sophos, winning 52 percent to Krause’s 48.

There was also a close matchup in the Hardware region in the Battle of the Scotts between HP Inc.’s Scott Lannum and Scale Computing’s Scott Mann. Lannum tried to claw his way back from an early deficit but came up short at the end. Mann took the win with 53 percent of the vote to Lannum’s 47 percent.

Here‘s a look at the final scores.


Shannon Sbar, Schneider Electric, 75 vs. Chris Lamborn, NetApp, 25

Oliver Tuszik, Cisco Systems, 46 vs. Christian Alvarez, Nutanix, 54

Rob Rae, Datto, 61 vs. George Hope, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, 39

Curtiz Gangi, Eaton, 67 vs. Steve Biondi, Lenovo, 33


Kimberly King, Hitachi Vantara, 31 vs. Rob Cato, Lenovo, 69

Donna Grothjan, Aruba, an HPE company, 85 vs. Andy Zollo, StorageCraft Technology, 15

Jason Kimrey, Intel, 66 vs. Rola Dagher, Dell Technologies, 34

Scott Lannum, HP Inc., 47 vs. Scott Mann, Scale Computing 53


Bob Lord, IBM, 23 vs. Gavriella Schuster, Microsoft, 77

Doug Yeum, Amazon Web Services, 42 vs. Eric Martorano, Nextiva, 58

Carolee Gearhart, Google Cloud, 81 vs. Jonathan McCormick, Intermedia, 19

Kevin Rooney, Veeam Software, 56 vs. Sandy Hogan, VMware, 44


Kendra Krause, Sophos, 48 vs. Todd Meister, Zscaler, 52

Steve Pataky, Area 1 Security, 22 vs. Michelle Welch, WatchGuard Technologies, 78

Frank Rauch, Check Point Software Technologies, 71 vs. Matthew Polly, CrowdStrike, 29

Karl Soderlund, Palo Alto Networks, 63 vs. Joe Sykora, Proofpoint, 37

Looking ahead to the Solutions 16, here are the face-offs in Round 2.

In Infrastructure, Schneider Electric’s Shannon Sbar will go toe to toe with Nutanix’s Christian Alvarez, while Datto’s Rob Rae goes up against Eaton’s Curtiz Gangi.

In Hardware, Lenovo’s Rob Cato will take on against Aruba’s Donna Grothjan, while Intel’s Jason Kimrey faces Scale Computing’s Scott Mann.

In Cloud, Microsoft’s Gavriella Schuster will square off against Nextiva’s Eric Martorano, while Google’s Carolee Gearhart will test her mettle against Veeam’s Kevin Rooney.

The Security region will see Zscaler’s Todd Meister face WatchGuard’s Michelle Welch, while Check Point’s Frank Rauch challenges Karl Soderlund of Palo Alto Networks.

Voting in Round 2 opens at 10 a.m. ET on Thursday, March 25 and will remain open until Tuesday, March 30 at noon ET. Visit to cast your votes and choose your chief!