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  • The Mile Record - passing the torch.

    I was pondering if every world record holder for the mile, since Bannister, competed against - over the mile or 1500m - the person who broke his mile record.
    Bannister ran, obviously, against Landy but I don’t think Landy ran against Ibbotson. Ibbotson ran against Elliott but I don’t think Herb ran against Snell over one mile/1500m ( they certainly did over 880yds/800m). Snell against Jazy over a mile/1500m? I’m pretty sure -disappointingly - that never happened. Jazy against Ryun never happened, and of course, Ryun versus Bayi never happen. Then we run in to a pile of “did happens” Bayi > Walker> Coe > Ovett > Coe >Cram. Now, Cram surely must have competed against Morceli as he, Steve, didn’t retire until 1994. Morceli ran against El Guerrouj but of course, Hicham won’t run against the next world record holder.
    BTW, it seems as if Michel Jazy is the only one who never competed against the athlete whose record he broke, Snell, or the athlete who broke his record, Ryun, even though they competed during the same period.

  • #2
    great question!

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    • #3
      Thinking again, if Elliott didn't run against Snell over a mile.1500m, then Peter is in the same position as Jazy, but somethings telling me that Elliott and Snell did run against each other in a post 1960 Olympic race but was it the mile? (BTW, I saw Herb run a in 100yd post-Olympic race in Manchester UK AND, I sort of competed against Herb in the 1962 English Cross Country Championships.

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      • #4
        That should been 1000yd race!

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        • #5
          In Cordner Nelson and Roberto Quercetani's The Miler, on p. 265 there is a photo of Snell, Delany, and Elliott at the finish of an 880y race in Dublin on Sep. 21, 1960. The photo caption notes, "This may have been the only race in history to match three Olympic 1500m champions (past/present/future). Results: Snell 1:47.9, Delany 1:48.2, Tony Blue 1:48.2, Elliott 1:48.4.

          The very next day, still in Dublin, Elliott won the mile in 3:57.0, with Snell 5th in 4:01.5. So there was an Elliott/Snell mile race.

          Cram's first mile against Morceli was, I believe, the Grand Prix Final on Sep. 7, 1990, won by Morceli in 3:53.28, with Cram 4th in 3:53.99.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Alan Sigmon View Post
            Cram's first mile against Morceli was, I believe, the Grand Prix Final on Sep. 7, 1990, won by Morceli in 3:53.28, with Cram 4th in 3:53.99.
            A photo from that race is on the front cover of the 1991 ATFS annual. Morceli is in front of Cram (who finished 4th) and Peter Elliott (3rd). The 2nd placed Jens-Peter Herold was out of shot.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by IOM1944 View Post
              I was pondering if every world record holder for the mile, since Bannister, competed against - over the mile or 1500m - the person who broke his mile record.
              Bannister ran, obviously, against Landy but I don’t think Landy ran against Ibbotson. Ibbotson ran against Elliott but I don’t think Herb ran against Snell over one mile/1500m ( they certainly did over 880yds/800m). Snell against Jazy over a mile/1500m? I’m pretty sure -disappointingly - that never happened. Jazy against Ryun never happened, and of course, Ryun versus Bayi never happen. Then we run in to a pile of “did happens” Bayi > Walker> Coe > Ovett > Coe >Cram. Now, Cram surely must have competed against Morceli as he, Steve, didn’t retire until 1994. Morceli ran against El Guerrouj but of course, Hicham won’t run against the next world record holder.
              BTW, it seems as if Michel Jazy is the only one who never competed against the athlete whose record he broke, Snell, or the athlete who broke his record, Ryun, even though they competed during the same period.
              Wow! I am looking forward to more posts from you, in the future. You are off to a rip roaring start, my frind.

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              • #8
                This has been a fascinating discussion!
                I had thought for many years that Elliott had run only one race ( in Dublin, over 880 yds) after his great Olympic championship in Rome, and I was unaware of his last serious mile race.
                Somewhere else, I learned that, while he was a student in Cambridge, he had competed occasionally, although sometimes when he was less than fit, and had actually become heavier-- and mortal!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by IOM1944 View Post
                  I don’t think Landy ran against Ibbotson..
                  Had a look for any pre or post Melbourne Olympic meets downunder to see if there might have been one, but came up with no results.

                  Best chance might have been if the British Empire vs US match in Sydney had included an individual Mile event instead of the 4xMile relay. Nor sure if Ibbotson was even in that relay team with Landy.

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                  • #10
                    Can't remember all that came between, but Snell met Ryun in the '65 AAU, when Ryun beat him 3:55.3 to 3:55.4.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by aaronk View Post
                      Can't remember all that came between, but Snell met Ryun in the '65 AAU, when Ryun beat him 3:55.3 to 3:55.4.
                      that's not part of the direct recordholder sequence that is the premise of this thread

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                      • #12
                        Here's a supplementary question. During the sub-4 min era, which athlete, who at some point, held the mile world record ran against, over the mile/1500m, the most numberof other athletes. who, had also at some point, held the world record. For example, Herb ran against three: Ibbotson, Jazy and Snell.

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                        • #13
                          Here's another question regarding the sub-4 min era. Which two athletes ran in races where their world mile record was broken?

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by IOM1944 View Post
                            Here's a supplementary question. During the sub-4 min era, which athlete, who at some point, held the mile world record ran against, over the mile/1500m, the most numberof other athletes. who, had also at some point, held the world record. For example, Herb ran against three: Ibbotson, Jazy and Snell.
                            This is just a guess, Walker with five, guessing he ran in at least one race with a young Morceli in it c. 1990. If not, then Walker and Cram with four each.

                            And this thread begs the broader question, which would deserve its own thread, of which world record-holding athlete out of all events competed against the most other athletes who at some point held the WR in that event? Way beyond my knowledge base.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by DrJay View Post

                              which world record-holding athlete out of all events competed against the most other athletes who at some point held the WR in that event?.
                              My first thought on this topic was 'well it would be 1970s plus as before then (except for Europe) many athletes only competed once or twice against another WR-holder every five years or so.

                              But then I thought about hand-timing where an athlete with a shared 9.0 100y or 10.0 100m record could have competed against many even in the one competition.

                              Then again, I though of Shirley Strickland in the 1950s who held WRs in the 100m, Hurdles, relays (and even 440y/400m as some other Australians held WRs in those rare (at the time) events).

                              This immediately made me think about Szewinska/Koch with multiple WRs of their own

                              That also made me think about someone like Stacey Dragila or Emma George in a 'new' emerging event like the women's PV in the 90s where records could be improved by very small increments.

                              Are indoor records also included?


                              So with a question like yours, so many details to be worked out first.

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