Fort Worth, Texas, May 5, 2016 – Nearly 700 of the USA’s best Level 10 gymnasts are headed to Fort Worth, Texas, to compete in the 2016 Women’s U.S. Junior Olympic National Championships, May 7 – 8, at the Fort Worth (Texas) Convention Center. Level 10 is the highest level in the Junior Olympic program, which is just under the elite level.
The returning champions include: Alexia Burch of Sparks, Nev./Flips USA Gymnastics; Wynter Childers of Spearfish, S.D./Spearfish Gymnastics; Kennedi Edney of Chino, Calif./Precision Gymnastics; Rachael Lukacs of Hillsborough, N.J./North Stars Gymnastics Academy; and Kai Rivers of Franklin, Mich./Twistars USA Inc. Edney and Childers both won senior all-around titles in 2015, and Burch, Lukacs and Rivers were junior champions.
The Junior Olympic National Championships is the culmination event for the competitive season. The competition features twelve age divisions (Junior A, Junior B, Junior C, Junior D, Junior E, Junior F, Senior A, Senior B, Senior C, Senior D, Senior E and Senior F), which are determined by birthdate. These gymnasts are vying to become Junior Olympic national champions in the all-around, as well as in all four events: vault, uneven bars, balance beam and floor exercise.
The competition schedule is: May 7 – 9 a.m., Junior and Senior A, 1 p.m., Junior and Senior B, 6 p.m. Junior and Senior C; and May 8 – 9 a.m., Junior and Senior D, 1 p.m., Junior and Senior E, and 6 p.m. Junior and Senior F. All times are local. Champions are determined for each session. The winning regions will also be determined at the conclusion of the competition. For results and other event information, go to jonationals.com.
Tickets are available onsite: training day (May 6), adults – $10, and children (5-12) and seniors (65+) – $5; one-day pass, adults – $25, children – $12 and seniors – $10. Children 4-and-under are free.
USA Gymnastics has eight regions, and the top seven gymnasts from each region’s Regional Championships advanced to nationals. The top four all-around athletes in each age division also qualify to the 2016 Junior Olympic National Team and are invited to attend a National Training Camp at the USA Gymnastics National Team Training Center at the Karolyi Ranch, a U.S. Olympic Training Site, in Huntsville, Texas.
The 2016 Women’s Junior Olympic National Championships is hosted by Metroplex Gymnastics.
The U.S. Junior Olympic National Championships is one of the national championships of USA Gymnastics, the sport’s national governing body in the United States. Many Junior Olympic champions have gone on to make the U.S. National Team and represent the United States in international competition and/or to compete in collegiate gymnastics. Many of the country’s top gymnasts are former participants in the Junior Olympic program, including 2012 Olympic team champions Jordyn Wieber and Kyla Ross, 2009 World vault champion Kayla Williams, 2008 Olympic team silver-medalists Shawn Johnson and Samantha Peszek, and 2004 Olympic team silver-medalist Courtney McCool, to name a few.
The states that comprise each region are: Region 1 — Arizona, California, Nevada, Utah; Region 2 – Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington; Region 3 – Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, Wyoming; Region 4 – Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin; Region 5 – Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio; Region 6 – Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont; Region 7 – Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia; and Region 8 – Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee.