Mary Beth Sallee
Reporter, Hart Co. News-Herald
Competing at a national level in any sport is quite the accomplishment.
Just ask Weston Paul.
Earlier this month, Weston competed at the AAU Indoor Track & Field National Championship in Virginia Beach, Va. He competed in the long jump and finished in the top 20 in the nation for his age group. Additionally, he competed in the 400M dash in which he finished 22nd in his age group.
The catch? He did so at the young age of just six years old.
“Watching Weston play with friends and family members, we noticed how fast he was,” said Weston’s mom, Whitney Paul. “We have known for a while we wanted him to be involved in track and field.”
Through a friend at their church, the Pauls learned about the Vette City Blazers Track Club, an AAU track team out of Bowling Green.
“We reached out to the coaches,” Whitney said. “When we found out that they could start participating at age six, we asked Weston if he was interested. His excitement about the idea was all we needed to see, so we signed him up.”
Weston, a first grader at Caverna Elementary School, had to compete in both AAU and USA Track & Field meets locally in order to compete at the national level. He has two coaches who work with him at Vette City Blazers each week: Coach Lexx (running/sprinting coach) and Coach Dezmond (long jump coach). He also practices at home with his dad, Donte Paul, and his uncles Devon Paul and Cedric Vaughn.
“It is so exciting for both his dad and me to see Weston finding what he is good at and what he enjoys,” Whitney said. “It’s even more rewarding to watch him grow, learn, and improve. We want Weston to remember that personal growth is the most important, and to watch him improve his personal best times and jumping distances is amazing! We are beyond grateful for his coaches at Vette City Blazers for the opportunity and experience.”
Weston, who celebrated his 7th birthday just two weeks after competing at nationals, is looking forward to additional meets in the future.
“I had so much fun in Virginia Beach,” Weston said. “Long jump is my favorite, and I can’t wait to go to my next track meet to compete for another medal. I’m going to try my best.”
“It’s been a very busy indoor season,” Whitney added. “But we can’t wait to get started with outdoor track and field and see what Weston will accomplish next.”