CORPUS CHRISTI – Former Texas A&M - Corpus Christi men's cross country runner Scott Vance has returned to competition in his native home of Mount Eliza, Australia. The former Islander distance runner placed fourth in the Australian National Cross Country Championships on August 25th with a time of 41:56 in the 12k. Vance will try out for the IAAF World Cross Country Championships in Bydgoszcz, Poland, next year. The event will be on Sunday, March 24.
GoIslanders.com caught up with Vance:
GI: What was it like competing in the Australian National Cross Country Championships?
SV: It felt pretty nostalgic. I had raced in this event eight times since I was 12 and it had been six years since I had been there because of the time spent in Texas.
GI: What would you compare the experience to?
SV: I actually found myself comparing it to my first ever national championships when I was 12 and no one expected anything from me.
GI: When will you try out for the World Championships in Poland?
SV: January 12th of next year, it takes place in Canberra, which is Australia's capital city. The course has been developed on the land of a burnt down forest and designed by a previous World Champion marathon gold medalist Robert De Castella, so I am excited to check it out quite soon.
GI: What is your pre-race ritual?
SV: I like to drink a Powerade, eat some yogurt, jam toast and listen to some Indie rock.
GI: What are some of the things you took away from being an Islander that has helped you to this day?
SV: The importance of awesome and loving teammates, coaches and trainers.
GI: What influence has Coach Flanagan had on your running career?
SV: The contrast between my coach in Australia and Coach Flanagan, I have just realized is massive. I love them both for different reasons. Coach Flanagan's commitment has pushed me to get up early so I can do the extra strengthening that I need to do, to watch my health, including the amount of sleep I get and to drink chocolate milk after training lol.
GI: Did you finish out your career in education and if so are you teaching?
SV: Yes, I started teaching physical education part time in a primary school or as you guys call it an elementary school, it is great fun.
GI: Do you still follow Islanders Cross Country and if so what advice would you give the current Islanders?
SV: Yes I do! Everyone is different, however, I would tell the guys to remember to listen to their bodies, get regular treatment, even if it's self massage, don't party too much, find a positive in everything and just enjoy it.
GI: What was your favorite memory as an Islander?
SV: There are way too many to choose from ... I guess one thing I often think about is the singing we would do in warm downs and in the locker rooms. Especially when we dressed up as cowboys, equipped with a boom box and mustaches, singing TNT as we marched through the Dugan Wellness Center up to do weights in the gym, almost too much fun!
For the latest information, follow Islanders Cross Country on Twitter (@IslandersTFXC) and Facebook (Texas A&M Corpus Christi Track & Field/Cross Country).