For Immediate Release
Date February 3, 2016
Contact: Jaxon Jensen (208) 317-3142
Breakfast with Fosbury and Friends
Reaching New Heights
Pocatello, Idaho – You would think after failing on the first two pole vaulting attempts at the Olympics you would be nervous. It did the exact opposite for Olympic gold medalist Steve Hooker.
“It was a moment when I experienced complete flow,” Hooker said. “I’d rehearsed the jump a million times in my mind and on the day it kind of happened all on its own. It was like an out of body experience.”
Hooker successfully cleared 5.90 meters (19’ 4-1/4”) winning the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. He then went on to break the Olympic record with a final attempt heart-stopper at 5.96 meters (19’ 6-1/2”).
This was the moment when all of his hard work and dedication paid off.
“Making every session count was my mantra. I had to understand how the workout I was doing today would impact the ultimate result at the Games,” he said. “If I could make that connection then I would get the most out of myself in every session.”
For Hooker, competing in the Olympics and winning a gold medal had been a goal of his since he was young.
“My mum competed at the 1972 Olympics in the long jump, so it was always a realistic goal to become an Olympian,” said Hooker. “After I came in fourth at the World Junior Championships in 2000, I could see a logical pathway to making an Olympic team.”
Although he came from an Olympic background, things were not always easy for Hooker. He had to learn how to overcome challenges and fight through adversity to eventually make it to the top of his sport.
Hooker said he had to overcome doubts many times, but the people around him were always there to help pick him back up.
“For me it was talking through my issues with my team, my family, coach, training partners, and sometimes a psychologist. Then it is just about getting back out there and pushing on with it.”
Hooker offered some advice to aspiring Olympians, especially those competing in Simplot Games.
“Find a balance between taking the competition seriously and giving 100 percent effort whilst enjoying the experience. This is a challenge that athletes face throughout their entire careers, so it’s a good one to practice early.”
According to Hooker, the most important thing for the rising generation of track stars to remember is it won’t be easy.
“This is the truth for most athletes,” he said. “It takes a lot of time, more than you think it will, to get to the elite level. Persistence is the most important tool to have in your possession.”
Steve Hooker will be the featured guest speaker at this year’s Breakfast with Fosbury and Friends which will be held Friday, February 19, at 7:30 a.m., at the Red Lion Hotel. He will also be signing autographs for the athletes at the Games on Saturday, February 20.
Tickets for Breakfast with Fosbury and Friends are available for $20 per person or $190 for a table of 10. For tickets call (208) 235-5604 or visit www.simplotgames.com.
More than 2,000 athletes will come from across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Australia to participate in the 38th annual Simplot Games. Simplot Games remains the nation’s premier high school indoor track and field event. Sponsored by the J.R. Simplot Company since 1979, the Simplot Games are held at Idaho State University’s Holt Arena in Pocatello, Idaho.
For more information on Simplot Games, please visit our website at www.simplotgames.com. You may also contact Lisa Woodland at (208) 235-5604 or Simplot Games Media Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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