Kayla Davis has proven to be the future of North Carolina and U.S. Sprinting, though she'd be a current star on the high school stage if she was two years older. Davis is a 7th grader out of Charlotte and is significantly faster than you when you were a 13 year old. Davis trains with Run U XPress at West Mecklenburg as the club has training groups in both Charlotte and Wake Forest.
This past weekend at the USATF Region 3 Championships Davis dominated her 13-14 competition running 23.73 and 53.15, good for NC#2 All-Time. Davis holds a PR from the North Carolina USATF JO Championships of 23.34 in the 200, which is also good for NC#2 All-Time. Davis also through down an awesome 4x400 leg where she went from 4th to 1st in less than 100 meters putting a big lead on the field for her Run U XPress teammates who ran 3:57.74 which is US#10 for 13-14 girls. She also was apart of their NC#1 4x100 squad that won in 47.87. Davis was not able to race the 100 as she already had 4 events, but holds a PR this season of 11.73.
To really put into perspective how fast Davis has run as a 13 year old girl think of some of the top girls in recent NC history like Anna Cockrell (World Junior 400H Champion) and Tamara Clark (New Balance All-American) and realize that she's already broken their high school PRs in the 200. Davis very well could break the North Carolina High School State Records in the 200 and 400 (22.88 & 52.74) before she event gets to high school.
Davis has one lost to a 13-14 year old girl and that was Tamari Davis (14 year old, Florida) at the Bring The Heat Invitational to kick off her club season. Tamari Davis set the 13-14 Age Group World Record of 23.38, Kayla has run faster than that now, but Tamari improved on the record at the Prefontaine Classic winning in 23.21. I thought we'd see a rematch at the USATF Junior Olympic Nationals this year, but it looks like Tamari will be heading to AAU Junior Olympic Games instead.
Davis is no newbie to the track. She's been competing on the club circuit with her brother, Jesiah Davis (14), where they joined the RunUXPress Track Club. Davis' mother, Katina, recalls Kayla racing with her friend as at the skating rink as a seven year old before she began competitive track and field. After seeing her run she called her husband and told him how fast she was and that she had a natural running form as just seven years old. From then on Kayla's been dominant on the track.
Kayla already has a ton of USATF Age Group National Records dating back to when she was racing in the 8 & Under Age Group.
USATF 8&Under Age Group Outdoor 100m - 14.35
USATF 9-10 Age Group Indoor 55m - 8.18
USATF 9-10 Age Group 200m - 28.46
USATF Indoor 11-12 Age Group 200m - 26.00
AAU 11 Year Old 400 Record - 57.07
USATF Indoor JO 13-14 200 Record - 24.33
USATF Indoor JO 13-14 400 Record - 54.92
USATF Association 200 National Record - 23.34
Davis' parents have a strong athletic background with Katina running from when she was 12 years old, and also competed in the NCAA at the University of Iowa. Davis' father played basketball at UNC Greensboro which would explain how Davis is so tall for a 13 year old.
Davis will certainly race at the USATF JO National Championships in the 200, 400, 4x100 and 4x400 and possibly at the Russell E. Blunt Invitational as a tune up before the national meet. Her brother Jesiah has qualifier for the national championship as well individually in the 400 after a 5th place finish and PR of 52.50. I believe it is still uncertain where Kayla and Jesiah will attend high school, but both look to be superstars on the high school stage for years to come. We'll certainly keep you updated on Kayla's performances at the National Championships in a few weeks as she is a heavy favorite to bring home two individual national titles.