Rachel Mehringer, a 14yr old from Jasper Indiana, has seen her achievements swept under the rug by most. But that should no longer be the case as she is headed to Greensboro, NC for the AAU Junior Olympics later this month. Primarily a hurdler, Mehringer has dropped nearly 1.5 seconds from her time of 15.99 from 2018 to 14.3 at the AAU Indiana District qualifier. Earlier this year she placed second at the AAU Indoor Nationals in Landover. The way her season has gone, it should come to no surprise that she will shine at the AAU Junior Olympics meet later this month. Growing up in southern Indiana, there isn't as much competition for a top athlete to go against. Just because the competition is minimal, that doesn't stop Rachel from wanting to get better. An interesting fact about Rachel, this past indoor season, she was able to compete in several meets and managed to beat many high school girls who went on to compete at the IHSAA State Meet this past June. We caught up with her to ask a few questions prior to Nationals!
When did you first begin running?
I started running when I was in seventh grade. It all started at Jasper Middle School and I started with the 100m hurdles, 100m dash, and long jump.
What are your goals for this upcoming season?
My goal is to get into the low 13s in the 100m hurdles.
Do you see yourself continuing your hurdling career in college?
Yes I do see myself doing this in college.
What is your favorite meet you have ran at thus far?
My favorite meet I have run this far was at AAU Nationals in Landover, Maryland and it was very much an experience. The race was a really good one so I'm glad I was able to go.
Who is your role model?
My father is by far my greatest role model. He has set all the standards and tells me what I need to do to get where I want to go. He helped me all the way through it and he guides me and tells me to work hard, enjoy what I am doing right now and that I need to be patient.
If you could be any animal, what it would be and why?
I would be a cheetah because they can run really fast and they're really pretty animals.
What are your hobbies outside of running?
Some of my hobbies consist of playing volleyball. I am a front middle hitter. I also like to do arts and crafts and I like to exercise with weights.
What are you looking forward to most in high school?
I am looking forward to running faster and getting better and going to all the new track meets that my dad can find. I can't wait because I know high schools going to be a lot of fun. I hope it doesn't fly by too fast.