Pre's People

“Pre’s People” executive producers Brad Jenkins, left, and Travis Johnson, second from left, pose with several of Steve Prefontaine’s Marshfield teammates and his coach, Phil Pursian (with the purple hat), during a reunion at Hayward Field.

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After 10 years of work, the producers of “Pre’s People,” a documentary about the legendary Steve Prefontaine, announced it will be available Jan. 25, which would have been his 70th birthday.

The documentary looks at the life of the running legend through the eyes of his faithful fans.

Production on the documentary started in 2011. Over the years, producers Brad Jenkins and Travis Johnson interviewed more than 50 of Pre’s coaches, teammates, competitors, friends and fans. They also acquired new film footage and never-before published photographs of the iconic runner.

The documentary features interviews with Pre’s track and cross country coaches at Marshfield, including new insights to his grueling training program.

“Pre’s mental toughness developed out of the workouts that we did,” recalled coach Phil Pursian. “He enjoyed challenges. He enjoyed (running up) sand dunes. Most of the intimidation would come in the race itself. He’d set a pace that would scare you to death.”

The documentary’s producers said Pre’s childhood surroundings growing up in the blue-collar fishing and lumber town of Coos Bay was perhaps the foundation of his toughness.

“We wanted to explore deeper into what it was about Coos Bay, the small town on Oregon’s rugged coast, that helped shape Pre,” Johnson said. “The hills, sand dunes, wind and rain not only made him physically strong but also mentally. It’s our objective to keep Pre’s lessons alive to inspire future athletes.”

Starting on Jan. 25, fans will be able to download the documentary to buy or rent through the producers’ website and Vimeo link,

A portion of the proceeds will go to Marshfield High School’s track and cross country programs.


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