American born swimmer breaks five records at national championship

By Lam Thoa   March 6, 2022 | 02:23 am PT
American born swimmer breaks five records at national championship
Swimmer Le Nguyen Paul at SEA Games 2017 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong
Vietnamese swimmer Le Nguyen Paul won 10 gold medals and broke five national records at the 2022 national swimming championship held in Thua Thien Hue Province.

In the 50-meter butterfly, Paul finished first in 23.70 seconds, breaking the record of 23.93 seconds set by Hoang Quy Phuoc 12 years ago at the 2010 National Championship.

Paul also broke three other records previously set by Tran Duy Khoi.

In the 200m individual medley, he finished in 1 minute 58.59 seconds, faster than Khoi’s 2019 record by 0.01 seconds.

In the 50m backstroke, Paul crossed the finish line in 23.96 seconds, faster than the previous record in 2019 by 0.32 seconds.

In the 100m individual medley, he also finished first in 55.39 seconds, breaking Khoi’s record (53.42 seconds) in 2017.

In the mixed 4x100m medley relay, along with Le Trong Phuc, Ngo Phuoc Tan and Vo Tri Trung, Paul finished first with a time of 3 minutes and 44.30 seconds, faster than the previous record set in 2018 by 0.67 seconds.

Six new records were set at the short-course (25m-pool) championship, held between March 1-6. The other record was set by 15-year-old Nguyen Quang Thuan in the 400m individual medley. He finished it in 4 minutes and 15.11 seconds, 0.89 seconds faster than the old record.

Paul joined 11 events in the national championship and claimed 10 gold and one silver medal.

Born in 1992 in Oklahoma, Paul began swimming at the age of eight. He also performed well in both tennis and gymnastics and was a familiar face at school competitions in Oklahoma.

Paul’s participation in the national swimming team came by chance in 2014, after he met Dang Anh Tuan, coach of Vietnam’s female star swimmer Nguyen Thi Anh Vien, at a competition in the U.S. in 2015. Then Paul wrote an email to Tuan asking for an opportunity to join the Vietnamese team.

He was granted Vietnamese citizenship in 2015. At the SEA Games in 2017 and 2019, Paul won one silver and five bronze medals for the Vietnamese swimming team.

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