SPRINGFIELD, Ore. (KMTR) -- Five-time US champion and two-time Olympian Nick Symmonds stopped by KMTR Thursday morning for an exclusive interview, leaving nothing out.
Symmonds is promoting an upcoming event he's hosting along with the City of Springfield. The inaugural Nick Symmonds Springfield 800 will be October 13th.
The race, with all proceeds benefitting The Boys and Girls Club of Lane County, will be a straight 800-meter race through the historic Washburne District and 5th Avenue. Symmonds told NewsSource 16 he hopes a lot of people will attend since it will benefit a cause close to his heart.
"What I wanted to do was create something here with the community that would potentially be something that would link me to this community forever," he explained.
Symmonds grew up in Boise, Idaho, before he moved to Oregon for college. He majored in biochemistry, but found his passion and talent in running. He attended the 2008 Olympics and returned in 2012, winning fifth place at the Olympic Games in London in 2012.
"Even if you're not running, just come down, support the event - it's for a good cause," he said.
The race will be open to all ages and will start in waves every five to ten minutes according to skill level:
Elite runners (men's and women's wave)
Masters - 40 and older (men's and women's wave)
Open Wave (men's and women's wave)
"They're going to automatic chip timing, comparing time with your friends and family," Symmonds said.
The course has no turns, which should make the near half-mile run a lot easier.
"It's 1/52nd of a marathon," Symmonds added.
Following the race, participants will be invited to stick around for prizes, live music and food vendors. Nick Symmonds and other elite athletes will also be attending.
The race, which will begin at 2 PM, will be on Saturday, October 13th. Entry fees are as follows:
Adults: $8.00 without tee-shirt, $15.00 with tee-shirt
Kids: $5.00 without tee-shirt, $8.00 with tee-shirt
Aside from the race, Symmonds said he has been enjoying his time in Oregon since returning from England. In fact, he recently visited Florence to crab with friends.
In London, Symmonds recalled focusing so much on the gold, he didn't have much time for much else. He said he is overwhelmingly grateful for all of the support he's gotten internationally and also from home.
"I'm just looking at the track trying to ignore the fact there is 80,000 people watching and three billion people watching in television land," Symmonds laughed. "I was disappointed I didn't come home with a medal, but I ran the greatest performance - the fastest race I've ever run on the biggest stage of my life - so I'm pretty happy about that."
In London, Symmonds ran the 800 meter in one minute, 42.95 seconds. The 800 meter race is two trips around the track. He lost to Kenya's David Rushida, Morocco's Nijel Amos, Kenya's Timothy Kitum and USA's Duane Soloman, all with times better than one minute, 42.82 seconds.
Although he said there are days he just doesn't feel like getting out and going running, Symmonds said he is continuing to train and plans to run in the 2016 Olympics.