With six athletes ranked No. 1 in the nation in their respective divisions, the CrossFit Rugrats have a chance to bring home half a dozen national championships when they compete in California in three weeks.
The Rugrats will travel to Anaheim, Calif., on June 26 to participate in the USA Weightlifting 2019 National Youth Championships. The meet will feature Olympic-style weightlifting, with all participants completing the snatch as well as the clean and jerk.
Competing for the Rugrats will be Addison Bell (11U age group, 49 kg weight category), Macy Foreman (13U, 71kg), Kylie Strehl (14-15, 71kg), Sam Burden (11U, 67kg), Isaias Morrison (13U, 67kg) and Timothy Davis (14-15, 81kg).
The team features a mix of veterans and relatively new faces with varying levels of experience. Coaches Tim Davis and Karina Delgadillo — a father-daughter duo who founded the Rugrats — said they all have a chance to at least earn a podium finish, but their athletes will have to stay focused.
“We try to get them in as many meets as we can,” Delgadillo said. “We’ll do mock meets on our platform here. For Timothy and Kylie, they’re both really seasoned. This is their third nationals, so they do better on the big platform. Macy has done one national and she seemed perfectly fine. Addison, Isaias and Sam are all competing in their first big meet, so they’ll just have to clear their minds and focus.”
Timothy Davis — Tim’s son — won a national title as a 13-year-old and finished runner-up a year ago. This year, his No. 1 qualifying weight total is 63 kg higher than his closest competitor.
“He’s hoping for his second national championship,” Tim Davis said. “If everybody goes and works really hard and gets hits their lifts they can hit, we have a chance to come home with all national champions.”
Tim said he and his daughter work well together and handle separate duties, and it’s helped find great success for the CrossFit Rugrats. While Tim handles most of the programming, Delgadillo is the hands-on instructor that has learned how to find the potential in the children.
“My daughter is a great coach,” he said. “We do all of our own programming and coaching. She bonds with the kids really well. She’s good at seeing where they need to improve. Plus they all love it. It’s kind of like a family here. When we’re not training, we hang out. They train good together because their friends.”
The program has already dominated competition at the state level, claiming 44 state records in the last two and a half years.
Delgadillo said she and her father put in plenty of work to develop the athlete’s skills, but the children have a big responsibility, too.
“It took a lot of work from them, and from us it took constant reminders to drink their water, eat healthy and make sure they’re in here,” she said. “At their age, there’s so many things they could be doing right now. We just stay on them to make sure they get their training in, but we still encourage them to have fun.”
Delgadillo said she’s setting lofty goals of the Rugrats bringing home six championships, though she knows a few of the divisions have tight competition at the top.
“I want them to give it their all and give it their best,” she said. “If it doesn’t happen, I don’t want them to go home tore up. I want them to know they did good and I’m proud of them, but at the same time I want them to go with the same goal (of a title) in mind.”