Boys' prep track: Woods Cross junior Dopp does things his own way
Woods Cross junior Cam Dopp enjoys restoring shells of old cars he retrieves from junkyards and turning them into sharp-looking workable pieces of machinery.
What makes Dopp really different is his willingness to drive one of these restorations amongst a peer group not generally known for readily approving of something different.
But Dopp does use his 1975 VW Super Beetle with candy-apple red with white trim to get to school.
"I got a little bit of grief about it," said Dopp, who learned the art of car restoration from his father and older brother while growing up in Wyoming. "But I can park virtually anywhere because of its size. Now people want to ride with me."
Dopp's interest in history isn't confined to cars. Bring up a name like Edwin Moses, and Dopp can tell you something about the hurdler who once won 122 races in a row.
"World record holder in the 400-meter hurdles, absolutely magnificent," Dopp said about Moses.
Like Moses, Dopp is a hurdler and a good one. Dopp won the Class 4A boys' 300 hurdles and took second in the 110 hurdles at the Utah state track meet last year.
Even more impressive, Dopp's state championship win in the 300 last May came right after he ran in the finals of the 400. And the then-sophomore also ran on the Woods Cross 1,600 relay team that ended up second.
Dopp's ambitions won't be much different this season.
He's already qualified for state in both hurdles events as well as the 200, 400 and two relays.
"He is such a competitor," Wildcats track coach Judy Allen said. "He's one of those kids that wants to do anything. He wants to pole vault. He's just a fun young man. He experienced quite a bit of success as a sophomore.
"He's really enthusiastic about track, about the success of others in track or really in anything."
Dopp, who lists early 1970s runner Steve Prefontaine as his favorite athlete, hopes to compete in the 400 hurdles and 400 in college in a couple of years.
He got his chance to try out his legs at the longer collegiate hurdle distance in some Junior Olympics competitions in California over this past summer.
"I felt really good about it," he said. "I ran faster than I thought I would."
After his track days are over, Dopp is contemplating a career in sports medicine because "the body really interests me."
Dopp tried a little of everything while growing up. He tried his hand at basketball, baseball and even gymnastics.
"Nothing kind of stuck out like track," Dopp said.