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Leighton Alexandra Varnadore was born on October 4, 1999 in Aiken, South Carolina to Chris and Leigh Varnadore. She has identical twin sister, Logan (Lizzy) and an older brother, Will. Leighton has two dogs named Brandy and Chester and one cat. Currently, she is a senior at South Aiken High School and she will graduate from high school in the spring of 2018.

Leighton, or Alex as she is known in the gymnastics world, had her 5th birthday party at the gym and kept going ever since. She joined the pre-team at Aiken Gymnastics and quickly progressed in the sport. She has been training under coaches Draha & Radik Krizova and Sabina Jokulis her whole gymnastics career.

Alex started competing level 7 in 2008 where she finished third in the all-around as well as first on uneven bars and floor exercise at the State Championships. She continued competing level 7 for the 2009 season. She placed third on uneven bars and fifth in the all-around at the Get Your Feet Wet. At the Sand Dollar Invitational, she placed second on uneven bars and fourth on floor exercise. She earned a bronze medal on uneven bars and finished fifth in the all-around at the East Coast Classic. Alex had a solid meet at the Charleston Cup where she placed first on uneven bars and in the all-around with a 37.600 as well as second on vault and floor exercise. At the State Championships, Alex placed second on uneven bars, balance beam and in the all-around with a 37.575. She also earned a gold medal on vault and a bronze medal on floor exercise. She qualified to the Region 8 Championships, finishing 14th in the all-around and eighth on vault.

As a level 8 gymnast in 2010, Alex finished first on balance beam, floor exercise and in the all-around at the Crown of the Carolinas. At the Flip Fest Invitational, she placed first on balance beam and second in the all-around. Alex did really well at the Magical Classic where she finished second on uneven bars and in the all-around and first on balance beam. At the Excalibur Cup, she finished third on floor exercise and seventh overall. Alex earned gold medals on uneven bars and in the all-around with a 37.000 as well as a silver medal on balance beam and bronze medals on vault and floor exercise. She concluded her level 8 season at the Region 8 Championships with a eighth place finish on uneven bars. In May, Alex traveled to Ljubljana, Slovenia with her club teammates for the Zelena Jama Open.

In 2011, Alex started her level 9 season at the Gamecock Invitational, finishing second on balance beam and third in the all-around. At the Greensboro Invitational, she finished seventh in the all-around and first on uneven bars. She earned gold medals on floor exercise and in the all-around at the Gasparilla Classic. At the Pink Invitational, Alex finished third on uneven bars and floor exercise. Alex grabbed gold medals on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around at the State Championships. At the Region 8 Championships, she finished fourth in the all-around and second on balance beam. She qualified to the Level 9 Eastern Nationals where she placed 22nd overall.

Alex started her 2012 season at the Crown of the Carolinas where she placed first on balance beam and in the all-around. At the Lady Luck Invitational, she finished first on uneven bars and sixth in the all-around. She finished first on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around at the Jim Gault Invitational. At the Charleston Cup, Alex placed second on uneven bars and third on vault and in the all-around. Alex placed second on uneven bars, third on floor exercise and fourth in the all-around at the State Championships. Alex had a great meet at the Region 8 Championships, finishing second in the all-around, third on balance beam and second on floor exercise. this qualified Alex to her second Level 9 Eastern Nationals where she placed 17th in the all-around.

In 2013, Alex placed third in the all-around, first on vault and second on uneven bars at the Crown of the Carolinas. At the Christmas on the Chesapeake, she placed first on balance beam and in the all-around. She had a solid meet at the Sand Dollar Invitational, finishing third in the all-around and second on vault, uneven bars and balance beam. At the Everest Classic, she placed first on vault, balance beam, floor exercise and in the all-around with a 37.825. Alex grabbed gold medals on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around with a 37.400 as well as a silver medal on vault. At the Region 8 Championships, she finished second in the all-around with a 37.750 and first on balance beam and floor exercise. She qualified to her third and final Level 9 Eastern Nationals, finishing 13th in the all-around, sixth on vault and fourth on uneven bars. In the summer, Alex traveled to Europe for 15 days of training and competition with her teammates. She trained in Austria, Slovakia and Czechoslovakia. Alex placed second in the all-around at the Worthersee Cup in Klagenfurt, Austria. At the Gym-Festival Trnava in Slovakia, she placed 18th in the all-around.

As a first-year level 10 gymnast in 2014, Alex finished second in the all-around and first on uneven bars at the Myrtle Beach Invitational. At the Atlanta Crown Invitational, she finished second in the all-around and first on uneven bars. She grabbed gold medals on vault, floor exercise and in the all-around at the Parkettes Invitational. At the USAG Sports Festival, Alex placed fifth in the all-around, second on floor exercise and third on vault. She won the uneven bars title at the Charleston Cup. At the State Championships, Alex finished first on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around with a 36.550. She concluded her season at the Region 8 Championships.

In 2015, Alex placed first on vault, balance beam, floor exercise and in the all-around at the Crown of the Carolinas. At the Christmas on the Chesapeake, she placed second in the all-around and second on uneven bars and balance beam. She grabbed gold medals on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around at the Star Struck Invitational. At the Paws for a Cause, she placed first on vault, uneven bars and in the all-around. Alex did really well at the Magical Classic where she placed second in the all-around with a 37.325 and second on uneven bars and floor exercise. At the Everest Classic, she placed third on uneven bars, floor exercise and in the all-around. Alex finished third in the all-around, first on uneven bars and floor exercise and second on vault at the State Championships. She qualified to the Region 8 Championships, finishing 14th in the all-around and seventh on floor exercise.

Alex finished fourth in the all-around and first on floor exercise at the 2016 State Championships. At the Region 8 Championships, she finished seventh in the all-around with a 37.450 and sixth on balance beam and floor exercise. She qualified to the Junior Olympic Nationals in Ft. Worth, TX where she placed 11th in the all-around with a 37.650.

Currently, Alex is preparing for the 2017 season where she hopes to qualify to the Junior Olympic Nationals. She trains 25 hours per week at Aiken Gymnastics in South Carolina under coaches Draha Krizova, Radik Krizova and Sabina Jokulis. Alex would like to qualify to junior international elite and to obtain a college scholarship to a Division 1 school.