Friday, May 9, 2014

Vol. 4 No. 38 The Other Side of the Coin on the First Four Minute Mile

Pat Butcher,  journalist , author, filmmaker, has been writing for years about track and field for an impressive number of press services and provides media services for high level marathon events around the world.  His website globerunner.org  is read in many places.  Below is a story his blog carried May 2, 2014 talking about the validity of Roger Bannister's first four minute mile and whether it should have been ratified by the IAAF.  He points out that the race was clearly paced by Chris Brasher and Chris Chataway.  It is questionable that Brasher even finished the race as he dropped way back after ceding the lead and was so far back by the time Bannister finished, that he could not have gotten to the finish line, because of the mob that came out on the track to surround Bannister.    Questioned,  Brasher gave a vague answer about finishing the race.   In the previous year a similar attempt involved Brasher dawdling way behind Bannister and letting him gain a lap on him and then carrying the pace once Bannister did overtake him.  

As reporters of such a monumental event,  we feel it is only fair to present both sides of the coin.  Bannister never denied there was a plan for Brasher and Chataway to set the pace, and his racing the rest of 1954 clearly demonstrates his brilliance and hard won admiration,  winning the European 1500 championship and the Empire Games mile outrunning Landy down the stretch.   Who too remembers that two days after Bannister's sub-4, Perry O'Brien made the first 60 foot shot put, a feat no less monumental, yet barely recalled today?  

from globerunner.org May 2, 2014
http://www.globerunner.org/index.php/05/tarnished-crown-2/

A second posting on globerunner.org from May 8 can be seen at the link below.

http://www.globerunner.org/index.php/05/sub-four-revisited/

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