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Rachel Dincoff can lay claim to a title that very few people on this planet can – She’s an Olympian.
Dincoff, who has trained, worked and coached here in Las Cruces for the past four years, qualified for the Tokyo Olympics in the women’s discus.
She didn’t make it to the finals in her event, after throwing 56.22 meters or 184 feet, 5 inches.
That placed her 12th out of 15 athletes in her qualifying pool.
Her personal best is 64.41 meters or 211-3, which she did at the Tucson Elite Classic this past spring.
“Of course, I wanted to do better, but I have to look at it that this as my first Olympics,” Dincoff said in an interview with The Las Cruces Bulletin. “My goals are actually a bit bigger. I want to use this experience to get where I want to be next.”
And where is that? “My next goal is to be on the podium. I would like to train and win a gold medal,” Dincoff said.
For now, Dincoff is in New Jersey, taking some much-deserved time off. Her boyfriend, Carl Lawson, is a defensive end with the New York Jets. Unfortunately, he recently injured his Achilles’ tendon and has been ruled out for the season.
Dincoff said she is taking care of him and then will get ready for the next step in her track career journey.
She has spent the past four years as a volunteer assistant coach with the New Mexico State University women’s track team, but will soon be moving from Las Cruces.
She followed her coach, Doug Reynolds, out here when he took over as the Aggie track program’s head coach. Reynolds has accepted a job as the throwing coach at Florida State and Dincoff said she will eventually move to Tallahassee to continue her training with him.
Dincoff called her time in Las Cruces “amazing.”
“I have so many memories, and it was such a beautiful part of this journey,” she said. “I am grateful for the experience. I would never have made my way out to Las Cruces or that part of the country, if it wasn’t for my coach moving there.”
“I haven’t processed (moving yet),” she said. “It will be exciting to have a new journey. I am definitely sad not to be around the friends I have made in the last four years. The good thing is: That doesn’t mean I stop being friends with these people and will come back and visit.”
She said she doesn’t plan to coach at Florida State but may help out once in a while. Instead, she plans to work part time and focus on her track career.
And that means setting her sights on the next Olympic Games which will be in Paris in 2024.
Making the Tokyo games was “validation for all the hard work I have poured into this,” she said.
“It’s important to celebrate your victories,” Dincoff said. “I haven’t reached all my goals, but I have reached many of them. It still leaves me hungry for more and that hunger will get me up in the morning and push me in my training.”