Brothers' determination earns nomination for SI award - WKRN News 2

Brothers' determination earns nomination for Sports Illustrated award

Connor Long Connor Long
Cayden Long Cayden Long

Two Middle Tennessee brothers are among five chosen athletes across the country that is up for the 2012 Sports Illustrated Sports Kid of the Year honor.

Six-year-old Cayden Long has cerebral palsy which prevents him from talking or walking.

However, with the help of his brother Connor, Cayden has been able to go biking and swimming, as well as participate in races.

"I thought it would be cool if he could get out and have fun and interact with other kids," Connor explained to Nashville's News 2.

Just over a year ago, Connor decided to push, pull and swim with Cayden at the Nashville Kids Triathlon.

"It wasn't the best, because it was my first [triathlon] but it was really fun to cross the finish line," he said.

Despite the duo coming in last at the event, Connor said it was a sweet victory.

"Having fun, being proud and crossing the finish line [is what matters]," he said. "When we crossed the finish line, I was so proud. I just wanted to do more with Cayden."

Since that first triathlon, the brothers have crossed the finish line together more than a dozen times.

Connor told Nashville's News 2 he trains regularly to help build his strength and endurance to compete in the competitions with his brother.

The spirit of determination and drive has not only inspired other families, it has also launched the boys into the national spotlight with their nomination for the Sports Illustrated Sports Kid of the Year honor.

"I think I've had a nice run and if I don't win I can always look back and say, ‘I got in the Top Five,'" Connor said, adding that he would not ever participate in an event without his brother.

Click here to vote for Connor and Cayden. Voting continues through Tuesday, October 9.

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