USA Judo National Champions to be Crowned in Daytona Beach from May 21-22

The USA Judo Senior National Championships will take place from May 21-22 at the Ocean Center Convention Center in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The USA Judo Senior National Championships will take place from May 21-22 at the Ocean Center Convention Center in Daytona Beach, Fla.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla.  – More than 300 athletes will go for gold at the USA Judo Senior National Championships from May 21-22 at the Ocean Center Convention Center in Daytona Beach, Fla.
The pinnacle of competition for Olympic hopefuls, the Senior Nationals will draw athletes from the United States in the first major domestic senior event of the 2022 season. Among the top athletes to watch are several from south Florida:
• Nick Rodriguez (Lehigh Acres, Fla./Ki-Itsu-Sai National Training Center/73 kg), two-time Junior Pan Am medalist and 2021 Junior World Team member
• Tasha Cancela (Coral Springs, Fla./Ki-Itsu-Sai National Training Center/57 kg), two-time Junior Pan Am medalist and 2021 Junior World Team member
• Nicole Cancela (Coral Springs, Fla./Ki-Itsu-Sai National Training Center/52 kg), two-time Junior Pan Am medalist and 2022 Cadet Pan Am Champion
• Shavon Gonzalez (West Palm Beach, Fla./Ki-Itsu-Sai National Training Center /70 kg), 2022 Junior Pan Am bronze medalist and two-time Cadet Pan Am medalist

Athletes also will compete in events for veterans (age groups for 30 to 80+) as well as kata (forms), brown belt, novice, and IJF-Junior events with all competitions held in the Ocean Center arena.
This year will mark the first time the Senior Nationals have been held in Daytona Beach–a city known as the host of the Daytona 500, but that also is the site of the Rolex 24 at Daytona, Varsity Spirit’s National Cheerleaders Association, and National Dance Alliance Collegiate National Championship, the College Basketball Invitational, JVC-Nike DB 100 Volleyball, and the 2022 USA Taekwondo East Regional Grand Prix.
“We’re excited to be able to bring the Senior National Championships to a city that is both an outstanding location and has a rich tradition of holding excellent sporting events,” said USA Judo director of membership and events Corinne Shigemoto. “Our partners at the Daytona Beach Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, the Ocean Center, and The Plaza Resort Hotel all have been outstanding to work with and I know are looking forward to helping put on a first-class event for the USA Judo family and showcase our sport to the community in Daytona Beach.”
All competitions are open to the public. Spectator admission on Saturday is $12 per day for individuals 13 and older, $6 per day for children ages nine to 12, and free for children ages eight and younger. Entry into the kata competition is free on Sunday.
“Being able to host premier events such as the 2022 USA Judo National Championships creates a positive impact to our local economy,” said Daytona Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director Lori Campbell Baker. “With a spectacular venue in the Ocean Center, high-quality accommodations, and a plethora of activities to enjoy, the competitors as well as their families and friends will have a great experience visiting at our destination.”