photo of Steve PrefontainePhoto Credit: WikiMedia Commons

Quotes by Steve Prefontaine

Welcome to our collection of quotes (with shareable picture quotes) by Steve Prefontaine. We hope you enjoy pondering them and that you will share them widely.

Wikipedia Summary for Steve Prefontaine

Steve Roland "Pre" Prefontaine (January 25, 1951 – May 30, 1975) was an American long-distance runner who competed in the 1972 Summer Olympics. While running for the Oregon Track Club, Prefontaine set American records at every distance from 2,000 to 10,000 meters, as he prepared for the 1976 Olympics. Prefontaine's career, alongside those of Jim Ryun, Frank Shorter, and Bill Rodgers, generated considerable media coverage, which helped inspire the 1970s "running boom." He died when aged 24 in an automobile accident near his residence in Eugene, Oregon. One of the premier track meets in the world, the Prefontaine Classic, is held annually in Eugene in his honor. Prefontaine's celebrity and charisma later resulted in two 1990s feature films about his short life.

Quote: Don't be afraid to give up the good for the great. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of Magic Keyboard beside mug and click pen
Photo Credit: Leone Venter

Don't be afraid to give up the good for the great.


Quote: I don't care about being on television. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

I don't care about being on television.


Quote: What does it prove, running in the AAU meet? by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

What does it prove, running in the AAU meet?


Quote: It doesn't feel that good when you're ahead the whole way. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

It doesn't feel that good when you're ahead the whole way.


Quote: If you can make money with your talents, why not? by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

If you can make money with your talents, why not?


Quote: It's hard to run a mile when you're not a miler and to kick when you've led all the way. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

It's hard to run a mile when you're not a miler and to kick when you've led all the way.


Quote: The AAU doesn't care about the athletes; why should I care about them? by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

The AAU doesn't care about the athletes; why should I care about them?


Quote: I knew I had to show everybody that I could excel at something. But I didn't know what. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

I knew I had to show everybody that I could excel at something. But I didn't know what.


Quote: The idea of losing the three at Hayward Field and the idea of losing my specialty to someone who wasn't running his specialty. Mostly, the idea of losing in front of my people. They haven't forgotten about me. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

The idea of losing the three at Hayward Field and the idea of losing my specialty to someone who wasn't running his specialty. Mostly, the idea of losing in front of my people. They haven't forgotten about me.


Quote: Why shouldn't I do what I want to do... I'm an American citizen. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

Why shouldn't I do what I want to do... I'm an American citizen.


Quote: I can endure more pain then anyone you've met. That's why I win, because I can endure more pain. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

I can endure more pain then anyone you've met. That's why I win, because I can endure more pain.


Quote: I don't just go out there and run. I like to give people watching something exciting. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

I don't just go out there and run. I like to give people watching something exciting.


Quote: You cannot propel yourself forward by patting yourself on the back. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

You cannot propel yourself forward by patting yourself on the back.


Quote: If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

If you fail to prepare, prepare to fail.


Quote: Having a true faith is the most difficult thing in the world. Many will try to take it from you. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

Having a true faith is the most difficult thing in the world. Many will try to take it from you.


Quote: 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. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

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.


Quote: Running gives me confidence. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

Running gives me confidence.


Quote: What kind of crazy nut would spend two or three hours a day just running? by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

What kind of crazy nut would spend two or three hours a day just running?


Quote: 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. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

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.


Quote: This is my last year at Oregon, and it means a lot to me. The people have been great to me up there, so if I have to run three races to win the Pac-8 title, I'll do it. Oh, sure, I'll probably be tired, but the people shouting will carry me across the finish line. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

This is my last year at Oregon, and it means a lot to me. The people have been great to me up there, so if I have to run three races to win the Pac-8 title, I'll do it. Oh, sure, I'll probably be tired, but the people shouting will carry me across the finish line.


Quote: It's not who's the best -- it's who can take the most pain. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

It's not who's the best -- it's who can take the most pain.


Quote: To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.


Quote: I run to see who has the most guts. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

I run to see who has the most guts.


Quote: How does a kid from Coos Bay, with one leg longer than the other win races? by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

How does a kid from Coos Bay, with one leg longer than the other win races?

Longer Version/[Notes]:

How does a kid from Coos Bay, with one leg longer than the other win races? All my life people have been telling me, 'You're too small Pre', 'You're not fast enough Pre', 'Give up your foolish dream Steve'. But they forgot something, I HAVE TO WIN.


Quote: 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. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

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.




Quote: To hell with love of country -- I compete for myself. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

To hell with love of country -- I compete for myself.


Quote: You probably choose x-country because you were too small to play football. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

You probably choose x-country because you were too small to play football.


Quote: A race is a work of art that people can look at and be affected in as many ways they're capable of understanding. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

A race is a work of art that people can look at and be affected in as many ways they're capable of understanding.


Quote: What I want is to be number one. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

What I want is to be number one.


Quote: Something inside of me just said 'Hey, wait a minute, I want to beat him,' and I just took off. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

Something inside of me just said 'Hey, wait a minute, I want to beat him,' and I just took off.




Quote: 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. by author Steve Prefontaine overlaid on photo of photo of author Steve Prefontaine with quote

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.


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