Athlete Interview - Blake Haney of Stockdale
Today we talk with Blake Haney of Stockdale High School in Bakersfield. Blake came into the 2013 track and field season as a favorite in both the 1600 and 3200, and has not disappointed in either event. He has recorded big wins at the West Coast Relays (4:10.39 1600) , and at the adidas Meet of Champions, where he won the Mile and earned a spot at the Dream Mile on May 25th in New York City, which will feature the best prep distance runners in the country. But perhaps his best performance this season came at the Arcadia Invitational, where he took 3rd place in a national caliber field in a blisteringly 8:48.58.
Haney, only a junior, currently holds the CA#1 times in the 1600 (4:10.39) and 3200 (8:48.58). On a national level, he holds the #4 3200 time and #9 1600 time, and is the #1 Junior on both lists. I caught up with Blake as he prepared for the Central Section Masters meet on the road to his bid to win state championships in both events.
Scott Joerger (SJ): Congratulations on a great season so far. You've had some big performances at Arcadia, the West Coast Relays, and the Adidas Meet of Champions. How do you feel about where you are at this point in the season?
Blake Haney (BH): Thank you! So far this season I am feeling great in my workouts. I am really looking forward to the postseason.
SJ: What is a typical training week like for you at this point in the season? What amount of mileage are you doing?
BH: We normally do about 2-3 track workouts a week and a Sunday long run. Currently my mileage is at about 40, but it peaked at about 55-60.
SJ: I know you are a big soccer fan - did you play growing up, or do you still play? How did you discover running and get hooked?
BH: I grew up playing soccer. I really enjoyed it and finally decided to give it up for running after my freshman year. I always loved sprinting in elementary school. My sister also is a distance runner and that was probably the biggest influence on the beginning of my running career.
SJ: When did you realize you could be successful at this sport?
BH: In 7th grade I ran a couple times a week and was pretty successful. But after my freshman year was when i realized I could do well in the sport.
SJ: Who has had the most influence your running career and why?
BH: I have many influences in my running career. Mainly my family because of all the support they have given me through the negatives and positives. My coaches and teammates are also a a huge influence because of the help and support they have supplied me with all these years.
SJ: You have the CA#1 times in both the 1600 and 3200. What is your favorite event, and where do you see yourself going long term, and why?
BH: My favorite event is probably the 1600m/mile because it best suits me right now. In the future I believe I will stay at 1500m or possibly move up.
SJ: What are your goals for the CIF Central Section and the State Championships?
BH: I would love to win the 1600m and 3200m for the Central Section and State championships. I feel way stronger than I did last year and my speed is starting to come around. Times are not much of a concern at this point in the season.
SJ: I know you qualified for the Dream mile in New York on May 25th. What is your goal for that event, and do you have any other competitions planned for post season.
BH: I hope to PR and get as close to the 4:00 mark as I can. It’s going to be an extremely competitive race and I'm excited to run fast. As for other post season plans we will most likely run the World Youth Trials and hopefully qualify for the World Youth Championships.
SJ: What do you like to do outside of track & cross country?
BH: Outside of track and XC I mostly hang out with my friends and watch sports.
Performance you are most proud of: Arcadia 3200 in 2013 [where he ran 8:48.58]
Last thing you read: The Great Gatsby
Favorite subject in school: English
What you'd like to study in college: Undecided
Favorite food: Bagels
Favorite movie: The Other Guys