State track starts Thursday. Lincoln's Elijah Young won't be alone clearing hurdles, but he could be the only one with a permanent reminder.
No hurdle is too much for Young.
“The hurdle is going to be there whether you chose to get over it or let it stop you, so I chose to get over them,” Young said.
With high expectations going into the Drake Relays, he managed a disappointing third in the 400 meter hurdles.
“I feel like in the middle of the season I was in a little bit of a dip,” Young said. “At the Relays I was in lane six, Districts I was in lane six - I wasn`t going to lose the same way twice so I ran my butt off.”
He ran the 4th best time in the state winning the district and beating the Relays winner. With his feet on the ground it was on to the next hurdle.
“That`s the only thing we`re missing with Elijah is a state title. He`s had a couple second places but now we`re looking to put the gold medal around his neck,” his coach Scott McClelland said.
“I have a national title but no state title,” Young added.
One obstacle after the other - the hurdles are a perfect metaphor for life and Elijah made sure he will never forget that. Last week he got “Every hurdle is the same” tattooed on his back.
“I believe the other part of the quote is: `it`s how you handle each hurdle,'” McClelland explained.
And he will have one more chance to clear that final hurdle during state.