SPOKANE, Wash. — Hannah Dederick and Jackson Atwood are currently the two best high school wheelchair athletes in the state of Washington.
"The best part about state track is making history," said Dederick. "History is something that your name and who you are will always be in the books."
The pair swept the boys and girls wheelchair races at state a few weeks ago, and between the two of them own six state records.
Hannah holds the record in every single state track wheelchair racing event.
"The records that they took down were actually athletes that I’d coached previously," said coach Teresa Skinner. "It’s really fun to see them step into those roles and know that actually several of those records that they took down are Paralympians now."
They are definitely well on their way.
This past week they were in Switzerland competing internationally.
When they returned, they found out they were named Para High School All-Americans.
"We were nominated by the Paralympic committee and I hope that because they did that they can see what potential we have in the future for racing," said Jackson.
The duo are both sophomores and both attending Central Valley High School, but what they have in common also extends to the track.
"They’re actually very similar," said Skinner. "The drive to be competitive is huge and they both have that. They both take it seriously enough, but not so seriously, and still have a lot of fun with it. I think that’s what makes them so successful."
With how talented they are, it looks like they’ll continue to rise together over their careers. That’s something they look forward to.
"Hannah and I, we’ve been racing since I was in seventh grade," said Jackson. "Just all the way through sophomore year, we’ve been having great chemistry. In the beginning she was faster than me, by a lot. We just push each other to be faster."
"I am very thankful to have Jackson as my motivation, my teammate, someone to look up to," said Hannah. "Looking back from now, I can see that Jackson was someone that helped me be a state champ, helped me make history, and pushed me to do what I love to do."
"Thanks Hannah," replied Jackson, with a chuckle.