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All Quotes by author - Steve Prefontaine
" A lot of people run a race to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into exhausting pace, and then at the end, punish himself even more. "
" American athletes, especially distance runners, are at a big disadvantage against the rest of the world. We're expected to live by all the rules, like not being able to coach, but still train and make our own living. "
" A race is a work of art that people can look at and be affected in as many ways they're capable of understanding. "
" Coos Bay is a sports-minded town. You had to be an athlete to be somebody. "
" Did you ever run behind a slow pack? You get a trailing wind and a lot of body odor. "
" Every once in a while I think, 'What am I doing out here running, busting myself up? Life could be so much easier. The other guys are out having fun, doing other things, why not me?' "
" For me, running against the Poles and Czechs would be like running against high school kids. And I hate all this gung-ho, run-for-the-red-white-and-blue attitude that the AAU spouts. If that's important to some people, fine, more power to 'em. But, damn it, I wish they'd leave me alone to do what I want to do - run against the best. "
" I decided that if I was going to continue in track, that I didn't want to lose, that I wasn't going to lose. "
" I don't care about being on television. "
" I don't just go out there and run. I like to give people watching something exciting. "
" If anybody wants to beat me, let them run a world record. "
" If he's having a good day and running the right race, nobody can beat Frank Shorter at 10,000 meters... nobody except me. "
" If I lose forcing the pace all the way, well, at least I can live with myself. But if it's a slow pace, and I get beaten by a kicker who leaches off the front, then I'll always wonder, 'What if...?' "
" If I want to go to Europe and get thrashed by the Europeans, that's my business. Every race I lose I learn from and get tougher. "
" If the Olympics come around, and I'm in shape, then I'll compete. But I won't be representing the United States; I'll be representing myself. "
" If you can make money with your talents, why not? "
" I have a positive mental attitude, and I think I'm divine, but I also think it takes a heck of a lot of blood, sweat and tears. "
" I knew I had to show everybody that I could excel at something. But I didn't know what. "
" I know places you better speak low if you've been to college. Men will come across the room and cold-deck you if you hold your glass wrong. "
" I like to be able to go out to dinner once in a while. I like to be able to drive my MG up the McKenzie River on a weekday afternoon. I like to be able to pay my bills on time. "
" I'm going to work so that it's a pure guts race at the end, and if it is, I am the only one who can win it. "
" I'm the one who has made all the sacrifices. Those are my American records, not the country's. "
" It doesn't feel that good when you're ahead the whole way. "
" It's hard to run a mile when you're not a miler and to kick when you've led all the way. "
" It's not who's the best - it's who can take the most pain. "
" I used to say, 'Hey, man, what kind of a stupid question is that?' to a newspaperman asking me heavy things right after a race when I'm still in an emotional state. Now I at least try to answer. "
" I've been in international competition, and now I know what the big boys can do. You don't go out and just run. There's an offense and a defense. "
" Kids made fun of me because I was a slow learner, because I was hyperactive, because of a lot of things. Running gave me confidence. "
" My philosophy is that I'm an artist. I perform an art not with a paint brush or a camera. I perform with bodily movement. Instead of exhibiting my art in a museum or a book or on canvas, I exhibit my art in front of the multitudes. "
" Nobody likes tainted victories. "
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