AJEE' WILSON, NEPTUNE
Senior, 400/800/1,600 meters, 5-7
JUST THE FACTS: Wilson finished fourth in a race against professional runners in the 800 meters in a state-record 2:04.13, No. 2 in high school indoor history, at the 105th Millrose Games last Saturday at the New Balance Track and Field Center in New York. The former state record of 2:06.0 was set in 1980 by the legendary Joetta Clark of Columbia. Wilson finished one place ahead of Maggie Vessey, who finished second in the 800 at the last two U.S.A. Outdoor National Championships.
REACTION: ``It's pretty crazy to think I'm running the same times as Joetta Clark when she was my age. Looking back to freshman year, I couldn't have imagined running this well.''
WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO FINISH AHEAD OF GREATS SUCH AS MAGGIE VESSEY: ``That race was really unbelievable. I still can't quite find the right words to explain what it meant to me, my coaches, and family. It was just a great and exciting experience.''
IS IT A GOAL TO BE THE FIRST HIGH SCHOOL GIRL TO BREAK 2:00 IN THE 800? ``Well, running sub-2 actually isn't a concrete goal of mine. I've never really been one to run for time, but I realize that if I make the World Juniors, with the competition I'll face, it is a possibility. And honestly I'm not sure how I'd react if I ran that time. I'd probably be more shocked and confused, if anything.''
WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO RUN SO MANY RACES THIS SEASON AGAINST THE PROS? ``Well, my coach and I thought it would just be a great opportunity to just experience that level of competition. It's a lot different from high school track, and similar to what I'll see in college. So yeah, the main reason was to gain experience.''
BIGGEST DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PRO RACES AND HIGH SCHOOL RACES: ``Well, besides the pace obviously, I think the biggest difference is probably that the races are a lot more strategic and critical. I've learned that each and every move you make can either make or break your race. In a way, I feel like you have to do a little more thinking and be ready to change the game plan if something unexpected happens.''
REST OF THIS SEASON: ``I'm not sure when's my next race, or what the rest of my indoor season looks like. My coach is still in the process of evaluating my last race and then we'll see what the next step will be.''
WILL YOU RUN AT U.S. OLYMPICS TRIALS OR AT U.S. JUNIOR NATIONALS: ``I'm not sure yet whether I'll attend the trials, but I am sure that I'll be going to the U.S. Junior National Championships.''
PERSONAL BESTS: 400- 54.51. 800- 2.02.64. 1,600- 4:43.92.
HIGHLIGHT OF CAREER: ``Competing at World Youths this past summer. It was really a great experience.'' Wilson won the gold medal in 2:02.64, the state outdoor record.
CRAZIEST THING THAT HAS HAPPENED TO YOU AT A TRACK MEET: ``The craziest thing I've ever seen at a track meet was probably at the Meet of Champs, I think my sophomore year. Mid-race in the 4x400, two boys just started fighting!''
SUPERSTITIONS: "I don't really have any. The only thing is that I wear a pink lace in one of my spikes that me and my fellow D.C. sisters (Keema, Bree, and Mira) got at Penn Relays.''
GOALS: ``Just to run faster, and eventually run in the World Juniors in Barcelona and hopefully win it.''
FAVORITE ATHLETE: Phoebe Wright. "She's not only an amazing runner, but a really nice and genuine person.''
FAVORITE MOVIE: "Bridesmaids."
FAVORITE TV SHOW: "Modern Family."
FAVORITE FOOD: Pizza.
OTHER ACTIVITIES: "At my school I'm involved in the Character Committee, Big Brothers & Big Sisters, and I just joined Student Council. Outside of school, I'm Vice President of the Central Jersey Youth Club.''
TRADING PLACES: ``Adele, so I could sing all day without people telling me to shut up!''
WHAT OTHER SCHOOLS DID YOU VISIT BEFORE CHOOSING FLORIDA STATE:
``I visited THE University of Texas, University of Tennessee, and LSU. In the end, it was just that I felt most comfortable at FSU and that I'd fit in well.