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Sacramento-area boxer heading to Louisiana to compete in Olympic trials

Sacramento-area boxer heading to Louisiana to compete in Olympic trials
Sacramento-area boxer heading to Louisiana to compete in Olympic trials 02:22

SACRAMENTO -- Local boxer David Delgado, 19, is packing up and leaving Friday to compete in the USA Boxing Olympic trials in Lafayette, Louisiana beginning Monday, Dec. 4. 

Of 160 boxers competing in the trials, only 13 can move on. 

The teen fighter credits family and his community for his success as he fights to represent the United States and Sacramento on the international stage at the 2024 Olympics in Paris.

"Boxing has really been the only thing I've ever been really good at. I feel like it's my real talent," Delgado said. 

The Woodland native who trains at Golden State Bloodhounds in Sacramento says discipline and drive define what it takes to get in the ring.

Delgado is ranked 8th in the country in his weight class of 112 pounds. 

"If you asked me a year ago, I would have never thought I'd be where I am today," Delgado said. "The whole team is family to me, my brothers. It's them being able to push me hard and seeing my hard work pay off."  

His coach Ray Woods turned his garage into a ring to build both family and fighters.

"It took a lot of work, and it's still taking more," Woods said of his two years training Delgado. 

In his 35 years of coaching, he's crafted winners before like famed boxer Diego Corrales of Sacramento. 

"He won his first world title with me," said Woods, showing CBS13 Corrales' picture hanging on the gym wall. 

Delgado, if he makes the cut at the Olympic trials, will be Woods' first Olympian -- which will be one of his proudest accomplishments. 

"I live through them. When they're in there fighting, I'm fighting too," Woods said with a laugh. 

Delgado credits his Woodland community for getting him this far. They raised thousands of dollars online to send him to Louisiana for the trials. 

"I'm more motivated now because I have people to make proud, people that believe in me," Delgado said. 

But it's his grandfather, the first person who believed in him and helped him get into boxing, who he fights for. 

"I always have him in the back of my mind. He's the one that started it all," said Delgado, who picked up his love of boxing from his grandfather at just 6 years old. 

It's a dream that lives on even after his grandfather's passing of COVID-19 during the pandemic. 

Family and the dream of the title are driving Delgado to the trials -- and, hopefully, the next round in Paris.

The USA Boxing Olympic trials start on Monday in Lafayette where Delgado will compete in at most six matches. If he loses just one, he comes back to Sacramento empty-handed. 

"It's a tough tournament to win but I'm not going there to lay down. I'm going to give it everything I have," Delgado said. "There's always more to accomplish."

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