Paris Olympics 2024 (Team USA): Meet Jess Davis

Jess Davis is a 32-year-old American athlete who has competed in multiple sports for over 20 years. Currently, Davis is training to compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics in the modern pentathlon event. When she was younger, she took part in three-day eventing, an equestrian competition that consists of dressage, cross-country, and show jumping.

Jess Davis’s Early life as a growing up in an athletic family

Jess Davis was born on January 26, 1992, and raised in Litchfield County, Connecticut.

Jess Davis Young
Image: Young Jess Davis (Source Jess’s Instagram)

She grew up in an athletic family, her mother Laura was an equestrian and her father Brad was a triathlete.

Jess Davis is a married woman

While little is known publicly about Jess Davis’ romantic relationships, she remains very close with her family – specifically her father Brad. Her father has been frequently pictured celebrating with her in major competition moments. He was present when an overjoyed Davis won gold in the relay event at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.

Jess Davis Father and Husband
Image: Jess Davis’s Husband (Left) Jess Davis (Center), and her Father (Right) celebrating (Source: Joe Kusumoto/NhsChiefAdvocate)

Most recently, Davis was with her father following an emotional 4th place finish at the 2023 Pan American Games in Santiago, Chile on October 23rd. That final positioning qualified Davis for the upcoming 2024 Paris Olympics.

Davis has kept her marital status and husband extremely private. With a social media presence focused almost exclusively on highlights of professional achievements, Davis has maintained distance between her private. 

Jess Davis qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics 

Jess Davis recently became the one and only U.S. athlete to qualify for the 2024 Paris Olympics in the modern pentathlon event. Her qualification was secured through a dramatic 4th place finish at the 2023 Pan American Games held in Santiago, Chile this October.

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The modern pentathlon consists of five sports in a single event – fencing, freestyle swimming, equestrian show jumping, and a combined pistol shooting & cross country running race. Athletes compete for points across all five segments, with the highest cumulative score winning gold.

As current rankings stand, the 32-year-old Davis will be the solo American modern pentathlete competing in Paris next summer.

Given the extremely demanding skill set required, modern pentathlon has little popularity in the United States. As such, she heads to Paris facing pressure as America’s first female modern pentathlete at the Olympics in over two decades.

She now looks to make American history next summer as a fierce, solitary competitor amongst the world’s top female modern pentathletes.

“This will be the last Olympics that the horses will be involved in. They’re taking the horses out after this one and replacing them with obstacle course racing,” “It’s a very historical event for the pentathlon because it’s our last time riding, and it’s in the country that the man who created itDavis explained

Jess Davis Modern Pentathlon Career So far 

Jess Davis has been a multi-sport athlete from a very young age. In elementary school, she competed in track & field events best suited to her height and build, like pole vaulting, long jump and triple jump. She also competed extensively in three-day equestrian events including dressage, cross-country and show jumping.

Davis continued her track and field dominance into high school and college. Though she dabbled in other sports like soccer and softball, her lanky physical stature proved best suited for field events. She competed in pole vaulting, long jump and triple jump for Central Connecticut State University, where records she set years ago in the indoor and outdoor pole vault still stand today.

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After graduating college, Having witnessed her father’s passion for Ironman triathlons, she decided to give triathlons a try herself.

During her triathlon stint, Davis was discovered by 1996 Olympic fencer Suzie Paxton. Paxton introduced Davis to the uniquely demanding sport of modern pentathlon. Of the five modern pentathlon disciplines – fencing, swimming, horse riding, pistol shooting and cross country running.

After college Davis was competing in a major modern pentathlon event – the UIPM World Cup in Sarasota, Florida, and now her long journey to qualifying for the 2024 Paris Olympics had just begun.

Davis Claims Gold and goes Towards 2024 Olympics

Davis broke onto the senior international scene by securing gold for the United States women’s relay team at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima.

Though the COVID-delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics proved too soon for the still-developing Davis. Over the next several years, Davis competed extensively at 6 UIPM World Modern Pentathlon Championships to gain invaluable experience.

At the 2021 World Championships in Minsk specifically, Davis finishes in the final, becoming one of just a few American women in the past decade to do so. This demonstrated her rapid competitive development against the best modern pentathletes worldwide.

In 2022 Davis enjoyed a watershed year in establishing herself amongst modern pentathlon’s elite. She secured multiple titles, including winning Division 1A National Fencing Champion in épée. Her standout consistency and ranking ascension culminated with finishing the year ranked #1 in the entire United States across women’s modern pentathlon.

Davis continued her winning ways into an all-important 2023 pre-Olympic season. Her accomplishments included National Modern Pentathlon Champion at the USA Pentathlon Summer Nationals event. Internationally, she captured 4th place at the Santiago Pan American Games to punch her ticket straight to Paris.

After the 2023 season, Davis qualified for the 2024 Paris Olympics well.