A 17-year-old Charlotte girl is continuing her march towards the U.S. Olympic Trials in marathon running.
Alana Hadley set a course record this past weekend at the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon. At 2:38:34, Hadley solidified her time as the second youngest female to ever qualify for the U.S. Trials.
"People were cheering 'First woman! First woman!,'" said Hadley of the last six miles of the race. "And so that kind of helped me push it along. Like, 'I'm in the lead right now. I'm under my time. I can get this course record. I just can't give up yet. I've got to get to that finish line.'"
Hadley has received much attention for her running exploits at such a young age. She decided to forego the opportunity to run for her high school and eventual college teams in order to run professionally. (She's a senior at Ardrey Kell High School in Charlotte)
As for the Olympic Trials, she knows she has a bit of work to do before having the chance to represent the U.S. on an international stage.
"In order to have a really good shot at making the team, I'd probably want to be right around 2:30, getting ready to go under at the trials itself," said Hadley.
It's an ambitious goal. But Hadley says she shaved about three minutes off her personal record in this most recent race, only her fourth marathon ever. The U.S. Olympic Trials are set for February 2016 in Los Angeles.