Caymanian gymnast Raegan Rutty posted five personal best scores and four National records at the Senior Pan American Gymnastics Championships in Lima, Peru, earning herself a spot at the Pan American Games in Peru next summer.
As a senior competing in the strongest rotation, alongside USA, Brazil, Canada and the crowd favorite Peru, Rutty needed to place above two other countries as an individual. Under the guidance of her coach, Johnnie Schmelzer, she aced that requirement by placing above four other countries in last month’s championships.
Of the line-up of 74 international female competitors at this meet, Rutty came in at number 40, well above expectations.
“I was nervous to rotate with such an amazing and world-class team, but the girls on the USA team were so supportive and nice. We would cheer each other on, which helped with the nerves of the competition,” said Rutty. “I was really happy with my performance because I put in some new skills for this competition and was glad I was able to show them to everyone.”
To perform at such a high level of gymnastics, Rutty sacrifices a lot, clocking up 38 hours a week of training at Stars Gymnastics in Houston, Texas. She lives with a host family in Houston, and takes online classes to keep up with her education.
The next competition where Rutty will represent the Cayman Islands will be the World Championships in Qatar from Oct. 25 to Nov. 3.
For updates on Raegan’s results, follow her @raeganrutty on Instagram.