Road to Rio: High school sprinter on pace for history
Georgia Athletes – www.11alive.com
It has been more than a year since Rockdale Sprinter Candace Hill became the fastest high school sprinter in U.S. history.
Hill was 16 years old when she ran a sub-11 second 100 meters making history. But it left her having to make a huge life choice.
In December 2015, Hill needed to chose between continuing her dominance on the high school circuit while preparing for college, or leave it all behind- much like she does with her competition- to turn professional.
She chose the later.
“I feel like I motivate people, inspire them and tell them 17-year-olds and teenagers can have the potential to win games like the professionals and the older people do,” Hill said.
There aren’t many people like Hill, a professional athlete navigating the halls of a high school as a professional athlete.
It leads to attention.
“They’re starting to realize me and notice me and want to be my friend. I’m like no,” she said laughing.
Garnering even more attention, the trajectory of her career.
Just one year ago, the thought of making the summer Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro was just that, a thought.
“It is in the distance, and I can see it,” she said. “It’s easy accessible.”
At such a young age, she’ll try to qualify for the games at the U.S. Team Trials July 1-10 in Eugene, Ore.
She’s learned from the best. Her coach, Sayon Cooper, is a two-time Olympian.
“Hill is a once in a lifetime type of athlete,” Cooper said. “We’re going to do what we can, put our eggs in one basket and go for it.”
Her time for the 100 meters is 10.98, and Cooper is quick to point out that time is not just fast enough to qualify.
It’s fast enough to medal.
“Of course I’m going to go to the trials and try my best, but if I don’t make the team, I’m not going to beat myself up about it,” Hill said.
“I’ll take that into consideration and say, ‘This is what we need to work on so by 2020, I’ll be ready.'”
Hill has the character and charisma to be the type of athlete that is easy to cheer for, but it’s that humility that makes her a little bashful when explaining her long-term goals: By 2020, she wants to be the face of U.S. Track and Field.
Story by: David Wilkinson and Alec McQuade, WXIA
Article from: http://www.11alive.com/mb/sports/olympics/georgia-athletes/road-to-rio-high-school-sprinter-on-pace-for-history/226760136