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Donovan Beckett-Simms Interview
By: Kevin Milsted

Donovan Beckett-Simms is a triple jump and long jump specialist from Seneca Valley who this season broke the indoor county championship meet record in the triple jump with a mark of 45-09.00. It was the top indoor triple jump performance by a Montgomery County athlete in at least a decade. While the Maryland state meet does not contest the triple jump, he will compete at New Balance Nationals and carry his momentum into the outdoor season where he hopes that he can improve to become one of Montgomery County's all-time greatest jumpers. Read on to get to know Donovan Beckett-Simms.

MoCoRunning: The regular indoor season is over for the long jump and triple jump in Maryland (unfortunately). Are you satisfied with your season?

Beckett-Simms: No, I'm not satisfied with how indoor ended because of how I performed last year during outdoor. I felt I should have started indoor where I left off at outdoor

MoCoRunning: Talk about this year's indoor county championship meet. You got the meet record in the triple jump and probably not the result you wanted in the long jump. What happened to lead to the outcome in those two events?

Beckett-Simms: I honestly could say that I felt pretty confident, not cocky but confident, about triple jump, but was more worried about long jump. There's really tough competition in long jump, because of Ty Mason and Josh Netterville. I went and overthought it too much and the result speaks for itself. But I do congratulate Mason for an impressive jump.

MoCoRunning: Are you going to seek out any more indoor meets after the state meet to try to improve your high school indoor best before outdoor season?

Beckett-Simms: Yes, I will be going to New Balance and hopefully get a nice PR while there.

MoCoRunning: What drew you to the long jump and triple jump? When did it all start?

Beckett-Simms: I started running track for football my 9th grade year, and during outdoor my friends said I should try long jump. It was fun jumping into the sand. I never thought much about it at first, then my coach wanted me to try triple and man was it awkward but I got it down.

MoCoRunning: Some of those guys out there in the field tower over you. Does that matter?

Beckett-Simms: I started laughing when I saw this question, but it used to. Me being 5'6 1/2 ft tall, it's always slightly intimidating when you see someone that's like 5'10 - 6ft, but as I learned there are guys that are 6ft but can't triple jump past 36ft which I find strange.

MoCoRunning: At the Screaming Eagles Invitational last March there was snow on the ground, but you still got the long jump and triple jump in. What about practice in the winter? Do you get much jumping in outside during the winter up there at Seneca Valley?

Beckett-Simms: During indoor, it's mainly conditioning and drills and if the weather was nice say 34 degrees plus I would ask coach if I could get some jumping and most times he would say yes.

MoCoRunning: What's your lifting regimen? Are you fond of the weight room and do you have a favorite drill?

Beckett-Simms: So I played football for Seneca (#6). Freshman through junior year I lifted a lot and sometimes I would run into trouble with it on my jumping, pain wise. Squats and vertical jumping drill are my favorite because it's just fun to see people expressions when you exceed their expectations.

MoCoRunning: You are out there with Onaje Robinson coaching you during meets. You have probably heard this but he is one of MoCo's all-time greatest high school horizontal jumpers and hurdlers with a high school best triple jump mark of 49-10.50. What does he bring to the table as a coach?

Beckett-Simms: Yes, I do know he's one of MoCo's GOAT's (Greatest of All Time) so it actually inspires me that hopefully I can get to around where he's at or even better past him. And I trust him because I know he knows what he's doing. As a sophomore watching Tyatianna Johnson, even though she's a girl, but watching her win and get interviews I wanted to be like her but a guy versions so she pushed me and I watched and learned from her and now that she's left I only really have coach and my teammates that support me and expect a lot from me as a captain.

MoCoRunning: What are your goals for this outdoor season before you move on from high school? What else do you need to work on?

Beckett-Simms: Well my goal is to catch up to coach Robinson the GOAT maybe even pass him. I also want to get faster because that momentum will definitely help with getting me down the runway.

MoCoRunning: What are you thinking for next year after high school?

Beckett-Simms: I wanted to go to a college around home not too far but not too close and run track for them. Football is still a pending decision.

MoCoRunning: It looks like you do sports year around with summer track and football, but do you have any hidden talents or unique hobbies outside of sports that not many people know about?

Beckett-Simms: I'm not sure, I've always thought a hobby was something that you enjoy doing and that for me is competing. Talents I would say is making weird noise that amuse and annoy but makes people laugh at the same time.

MoCoRunning: You spend a lot of your time at meets with the same group of guys. Who do you like to compete against?

Beckett-Simms: Ty Mason and Devin Butler. Mason is in my division so I'm going to be jumping against him during regionals and states so he's a good motivator. Devin although he's not in our county he's good competition in triple jump. He's a really good jumper and there's have been meets where he's had his jumps and I've had mine, but Butler has had more jumps convincingly go his way this year.


2016-02-20 10:51:05

This is good stuff

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