Thursday, May 24, 2018

V 8 N. 33 Laszlo Tabori, Olympian, Hungarian, American R.I.P.

from Associated Press  by Beth Harris   May 24, 2018
Roger Bannister congratulates Laszlo Tabori on his 4 minute mile

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Laszlo Tabori, who in 1955 became the third man to break the four-minute barrier in the mile and later coached distance runners at the University of Southern California, died Wednesday. He was 86.
The school said the Hungarian-born Tabori died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. No cause was given.
Tabori joined Roger Bannister and John Landy as the only men to break the four-minute barrier. He did so with a time of 3 minutes, 59 seconds, on May 28, 1955. That same year, Tabori held the 1,500-meter world record with a time of 3:40.8. He was also a member of the world record-setting team in the 4-x-1,500 relay.

Tabori 3rd Man to Break 4 Minute Mile    clik here

Tabori finished fourth in the 1,500 and sixth in the 5,000 at the 1956 Melbourne Olympics.
After the games, he and his coach Mihaly Igloi defected to the U.S. and eventually settled in Los Angeles. Tabori stayed in shape for many years and would have been a medal contender at the 1960 Rome Olympics, but he could no longer run for Hungary and wasn’t yet a U.S. citizen. He retired from running two years later.
Tabori returned to the sport as a coach in 1967, employing methods he learned from Igloi. Tabori was a proponent of interval training and was the longtime coach of the San Fernando Valley Track Club.
Among his star pupils were Boston Marathon winner Jacqueline Hansen and Miki Gorman, winner of the New York City and Boston marathons.
Tabori worked with USC’s men’s distance runners and the school’s running club team, notably coaching Duane Solomon to a berth in the 2012 London Olympics.
Born July 6, 1931, in Kosice, Hungary, Tabori was inducted into the Hungarian Hall of Fame in Budapest in 1995 for his accomplishments as an athlete and Olympian. In 2002, Tabori received the Fair Play Award from the International Olympic Committee for lifetime achievement and outstanding contribution to the sport.

Dear George,

I was sorry to hear of the passing of Laszlo Tabori.  I remember watching the 3rd man to run a sub-4 mile at a 2 mile race in East York Stadium, Toronto, as a 16 year old in 1961.  The grace of his running was a delight to watch.  This particular race was captured in a short 10 minute documentary about Bruce Kidd.  It can be seen at:

Please feel free to post on the website.

All the best,
David (Bailey)  

David Bailey was Canada's first Sub 4 Minute Miler  ed.  

1 comment:

Blind Groper said...

I remember being in awe at the workouts Tabori did when he first defected to the U.S. He and Igloi lived in San Jose and Tabori worked out at the Spartan track. He would begin by doing 40 x 110 on the football field, jogging the width of the field in maybe 20 seconds. Then, he would go for a 4-8 mile run. They said he was doing 20 miles a day, and I had never heard of anyone doing anything close to that.

Thinking back on those days, I also remember Paul Anderson, the world's strongest man, giving the shot-put a try. I think he got it out only around 46 feet. Everyone was expecting him to hit close to 60, but strength and power are not the same. Of course, he didn't really have the form and that was a big factor. There was a match race between Anderson and Jim Lea, the 440 record holder at the time at 50 yards. Everyone wondered how Anderson could run, as he seemed to struggle to walk, his massive legs overlapping each other. However, he blasted off the blocks and had Lea beat for 25 yards or so, but Lead pulled away over the final 10-15 yards. I don't recall their times, but they were somewhere around 5.3 for Lea and 6.0 for Anderson

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