Spotlight On: Scott Fuqua

Scott Fuqua is one of the top high school distance runners in the nation and the defending Alabama 5A CC State Champion. Scott agreed to talk with us one night for an exclusive pre-state interview.

AlabamaRunners.com: What got you started in running?
Scott Fuqua: My P.E. teacher told me I should give it a try in 7th grade. I was playing tennis at the time but I went to a track camp over the summer. I liked it so I split time the next spring between tennis and track and field but I didnt do any training towards running distance. The following summer I gave up tennis and began running on a regular basis.

AlabamaRunners.com: Who are your favorite professional runners currently running or of all time?
Scott Fuqua: My favorite professional currently running is Haile Gebreselassie. He is the greatest distance runner of all time. His accomplishments are incredible and he has done alot to give back to the people of his country. I have a poster of him above my bed--right below [the poster] of my all time favorite runner, Steve Prefontaine. Prefontaine was of course an incredible runner but I admire just as much all the work he did off the track to help get our sport to the point where it is today.

AlabamaRunners.com: How has your training been so far this season?
Scott Fuqua: Well, my summer training didnt go as well as I would have liked because of a back injury from early July. Since early September things have gone pretty well. I have trained through pretty much all the races so far.

AlabamaRunners.com: Your summer back injury has been pretty well publicized. How has it recovered?
Scott Fuqua: It gave me some trouble for a while. After I had to drop out at Great American in Charlotte, I started to see a new chiropractor and it has made all the difference. It isnt 100% yet but it I feel like it is improving.

AlabamaRunners.com: What are your goals for the rest of the cross country season?
Scott Fuqua: Over the next week my number one goal is for our team to run the best race that we can. Defending my individual title would be great but it wont mean as much if our team doesnt run well. Once state is over with I will start to look at my personal goals. Top 8 at Footlocker South would be nice but it is going to be really tough this year with all the great runners we have in the South. Right now it is all about our team.

AlabamaRunners.com: Do you have any time goals for Footlocker Regionals or Nationals?
Scott Fuqua: It's hard to make time goals for cross country because weather can be such a huge factor (as I am sure everyone who was in Charlotte for the South Region last year knows). I ran 15:41 last year under poor conditions. I have been running about 20 seconds faster on some of the same courses I ran last year so far; so I think 15:20 would be a good run. I dont put alot of emphasis on time during cross country. I am just hoping to be able to go out and run as well as I can.

AlabamaRunners.com: How do you feel about your chances to qualify?
Scott Fuqua: Well, the South is looking pretty tough this year. This could be the strongest year in the history of the South. I feel like a have a shot to make the team if I can go out and run my race to the best of my ability. It is going to take an incredible run to make the team to nationals. It would be a huge honor to represent the South in Orlando. Not to mention being a member of a South team that could win the national team title.

AlabamaRunners.com: Who do you consider the favorites for Foot Locker Nationals?
Scott Fuqua: It is going to be a really tight race this year. I ran with Bobby Curtis for about two miles in San Francisco and he is going to be tough to beat. Joe Thorne will be up there in the hunt. Bobby Lockhart is another guy who has a good shot. Yong-Sung Leal will has been running very well out on the West Coast. Tim Moore is the top returner and he will certainly factor into the champioship picture. Chris Lukezic was the top guy last year on the track and it looks like he could be one of the favorites.

AlabamaRunners.com: What is your favorite school subject?
Scott Fuqua: Social studies...AP History or AP Government.

AlabamaRunners.com: What are your hobbies outside of running?
Scott Fuqua: I really enjoy reading. I like reading books on military history. Other than that I play a little ping-pong when I have time. I ussually play alot of golf during the summers but the back injury put a stop to that this past summer.

AlabamaRunners.com: Are you reading anything specific right now?
Scott Fuqua: I am reading We Were Soldeirs Once and Young, right now. It is very moving, it's about the first major action of the Air Cav in 'Nam.

AlabamaRunners.com: Alright, Scott, thank you very much for talking with us. Good luck with the rest of your season!
Scott Fuqua: Thank you.

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