Derek Shelton knows a thing or two about winning. Not only has the 43-year old Columbia resident won Show-Me State Game gold, he was at one time one of the world’s best long-jumpers. In 1985 he was ranked 6th in the U.S. and 8th world-wide. A minor injury from a car wreck in 1984 kept him from making the U.S. Olympic team. But his competitive juices are still flowing. He won yet another Show-Me State title this year and his daughters are also competing. The jumping bug has been passed on to his children. Nine-year old Amina has done well on a national level and six-year old Alexa was the winner of her age division of the long jump at the Show-Me State Games last year. Unfortunately the girls didn’t do as well as expected–Amina finished 7th in her division, and Alexa was 5th in hers. If you think the sport was forced on them by dad, you’re wrong. Derek says he didn’t push it, but his wife, who was a high school runner, suggested it. So the whole family’s involved. The next few years should prove to be very interesting around the Shelton household. The problem will be keeping up with them.
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