Roger Bannister - Former British Athlete who Ran the First Sub-four-minute Mile, Birthday and Childhood

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Roger Bannister's Personal Details

Roger Bannister is an English doctor, academic and a former athlete

InformationDetail
BirthdayMarch 23, 1929
NationalityBritish
FamousFormer British Athlete who Ran the First Sub-four-minute Mile, Imperial College London, Physicians, Neurologists, Athletes
SpousesMoyra Jacobsson
Known asSir Roger Gilbert Bannister
Childrens Charlotte Bannister-Parker, Clive Christopher Bannister, Erin Bannister Townsend, Thurstan Bannister
Universities
  • Imperial College London
  • Exeter College
  • Oxford
  • Imperial College London
  • Merton College
  • Oxford
  • University of Oxford
Notable Alumnis
  • Imperial College London
Birth PlaceHarrow, England, United Kingdom
Height188cm
GenderMale
Net Worth$70 million as of February 8,2017
Sun SignAries
Born inHarrow, England, United Kingdom
Famous asFormer British Athlete Who Ran The First Sub-Four-Minute Mile

// Famous Former British Athlete who Ran the First Sub-four-minute Mile

Roger Bannister's photo

Who is Roger Bannister?

Sir Roger Gilbert Bannister, CBE is a former English athlete, academic and neurologist. He is famous as the athlete who ran the first sub-four-minute-mile. Bannister belonged to a middle-class family and was full of great aspirations since he was young. He was a natural at running and wanted to study at an elite university in England to become a doctor. He secured a scholarship to Oxford and it is there that he started to achieve professional training for running. After much training and when he felt like he was finally up to the challenge, Bannister participated in the 1952 Olympics in Helsinki and set a British record in the 1500 meters, but failed to win the medal. This event crushed his spirits badly and he decided to quit running but later he made a new goal for himself - to become the first 4-minute miler. In 1954, during a meet between British AAA and Oxford University, he made history at the age of 25 by breaking the unbreakable record by completing the first three quarter-mile laps in less than three minutes and the last lap in less than a minute (3:59:4). Bannister is currently the Director of the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases, London, and a trustee-delegate of St. Mary's Hospital Medical School.

// Famous Alumni of Imperial College London

Childhood & Early Life

Bannister was born in Harrow, England, into a working class family. He started exhibiting talent in running very early and attended Vaughan Primary school in Harrow and was later educated at City of Bath Boys School.

He wanted to achieve university education but his parents could not afford to educate him in an elite university which is why Bannister aspired to win a scholarship to one of the top-notch universities and study medicine.

Besides being an ace on the running track, Bannister was an exceptionally studious youngster. His efforts won him a scholarship to Oxford University and he went to medical school at Exeter College and Merton College.

Career

At the age of 17, Bannister commenced his running career at Oxford in 1946. Until now, he had not been professionally trained in running but only three weekly half-hour training sessions revealed the hidden talent in him.

After getting proper training he was chosen as an Olympic 'possible' in 1948 but he refused as he felt that he was still not ready for the challenge. His eyes were set on the 1952 Olympics in Helsinki.

In 1949, Bannister started to show great improvements in the 880 yard races and by now won many mile races. He also came in third at White City in 4:14:2 apparently without any special training.

He was becoming increasingly good at racing and in 1950 finished a relatively slow 4:13 mile with an impressive 57.5 last quarter. He came in third in the 800 m at the European Championships.

In a very challenging competition, he won a mile race in 1951 at the AAA Championships, White City, which 47,000 people witnessed live. The time set a meet record and he defeated Bill Nankeville in the course of action.

In 1952, Bannister ran 880 yards in 1:53.00, and then a 4:10.6 mile time-trial. Few days before the Olympic final, he ran a 3/4 mile time trial in 2:52.9 - he felt he was ready for the Olympics.

Bannister was not comfortable with the semifinals for the 1500 m at the Olympics as he knew that since he had not received deeper training regimens, he would be at a disadvantage. He finished fifth and qualified for the final.

Bannister finished fourth in 1952 Olympics and set a British record of 3:46.30 (3:46.0) but he considered it as his failure and contemplated giving up running altogether. But he recovered from the setback and set new goals for himself.

In 1953, he broke Sydney Wooderson's 1945 British record at Oxford and ran 4:03:6 and realized that he could achieve a four-minute mile challenge. By this time, he was pursuing medical studies at St. Mary's Hospital Medical School.

In 1954, during a meet between British AAA and Oxford University, Bannister made history by breaking record by completing the first three quarter-mile laps in less than three minutes and the last lap in less than a minute (3:59:4).

Within a month, the Australian runner John Landy broke his record, but in the British Empire Games, Vancouver (The Mile of the Century), both runners beat the four-minute time, but Bannister came in first at 3:58.8 to Landy's 3:59.6.

In the same year, Bannister was awarded the Silver Pears Trophy, presented yearly for the stupendous British accomplishment in any field and won the European title in the 1500-meter before retiring from competition.

After retirement from athletics, Bannister finished his medical studies and for the next two decades involved himself deeply with a career in research and with clinical practice as a neurologist. Later, he devoted himself to research alone.

He remained in touch with the sports by serving as the Chairman of the Sports Council of Great Britain (from 1971 to 1974), and as President of the International Council for Sport and Physical Recreation (from 1976 to 1983).

Presently, Bannister is Director of the National Hospital for Nervous Diseases, London, and a trustee-delegate of St. Mary's Hospital Medical School. He is also Chairman of the Editorial Board of 'Clinical Autonomic Research' and is the editor of 'Autonomic Failure'.

Awards & Achievements

Bannister has earned accolades for his achievements, like: Silver Pears Trophy, Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year award, Honorary Degrees by University of Sheffield and University of Bath. He was knighted for his services as the Chairman of Sport England.

Bannister has an equal number of achievements in medical science and athletics. But it is for his athletic triumphs that he is remembered more, especially when he made history by breaking the record of four-minute mile challenge in 1954.

His most prominent role in academic medicine is in the field of autonomic failure, an area of neurology focusing on diseases caused by particular automatic responses of the nervous system not taking place.

Personal Life & Legacy

Bannister is married to Lady Moyra Bannister and they live together in a flat in North Oxford.

Trivia

This former British athlete carried the Olympic flame at the site of his memorable feat, in the stadium now named after him, in 2012.

St Mary's Hospital (London), Imperial College School of Medicine has named a lecture theatre after Bannister.

He once famously said - 'The man who can drive himself further once the effort gets painful is the man who will win'.

// Famous Neurologists

Roger Bannister awards

YearNameAward

Other

1955 - Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year

Roger Bannister biography timelines

  • // 23rd Mar 1929
    Bannister was born in Harrow, England, into a working class family. He started exhibiting talent in running very early and attended Vaughan Primary school in Harrow and was later educated at City of Bath Boys School.
  • // 1946
    At the age of 17, Bannister commenced his running career at Oxford in 1946. Until now, he had not been professionally trained in running but only three weekly half-hour training sessions revealed the hidden talent in him.
  • // 1948
    After getting proper training he was chosen as an Olympic 'possible' in 1948 but he refused as he felt that he was still not ready for the challenge. His eyes were set on the 1952 Olympics in Helsinki.
  • // 1949
    In 1949, Bannister started to show great improvements in the 880 yard races and by now won many mile races. He also came in third at White City in 4:14:2 apparently without any special training.
  • // 1950
    He was becoming increasingly good at racing and in 1950 finished a relatively slow 4:13 mile with an impressive 57.5 last quarter. He came in third in the 800 m at the European Championships.
  • // 1951
    In a very challenging competition, he won a mile race in 1951 at the AAA Championships, White City, which 47,000 people witnessed live. The time set a meet record and he defeated Bill Nankeville in the course of action.
  • // 1952
    In 1952, Bannister ran 880 yards in 1:53.00, and then a 4:10.6 mile time-trial. Few days before the Olympic final, he ran a 3/4 mile time trial in 2:52.9 - he felt he was ready for the Olympics.
  • // 1952
    Bannister finished fourth in 1952 Olympics and set a British record of 3:46.30 (3:46.0) but he considered it as his failure and contemplated giving up running altogether. But he recovered from the setback and set new goals for himself.
  • // 1953
    In 1953, he broke Sydney Wooderson's 1945 British record at Oxford and ran 4:03:6 and realized that he could achieve a four-minute mile challenge. By this time, he was pursuing medical studies at St. Mary's Hospital Medical School.
  • // 1954
    In 1954, during a meet between British AAA and Oxford University, Bannister made history by breaking record by completing the first three quarter-mile laps in less than three minutes and the last lap in less than a minute (3:59:4).
  • // 1954
    Bannister has an equal number of achievements in medical science and athletics. But it is for his athletic triumphs that he is remembered more, especially when he made history by breaking the record of four-minute mile challenge in 1954.
  • // 1971 To 1983
    He remained in touch with the sports by serving as the Chairman of the Sports Council of Great Britain (from 1971 to 1974), and as President of the International Council for Sport and Physical Recreation (from 1976 to 1983).
  • // 2012
    This former British athlete carried the Olympic flame at the site of his memorable feat, in the stadium now named after him, in 2012.

// Famous Physicians

Roger Bannister's FAQ

  • What is Roger Bannister birthday?

    Roger Bannister was born at 1929-03-23

  • Where is Roger Bannister's birth place?

    Roger Bannister was born in Harrow, England, United Kingdom

  • What is Roger Bannister nationalities?

    Roger Bannister's nationalities is British

  • Who is Roger Bannister spouses?

    Roger Bannister's spouses is Moyra Jacobsson

  • Who is Roger Bannister childrens?

    Roger Bannister's childrens is Charlotte Bannister-Parker, Clive Christopher Bannister, Erin Bannister Townsend, Thurstan Bannister

  • What was Roger Bannister universities?

    Roger Bannister studied at Imperial College London, Exeter College, Oxford, Imperial College London, Merton College, Oxford, University of Oxford

  • What was Roger Bannister notable alumnis?

    Roger Bannister's notable alumnis is Imperial College London

  • How tall is Roger Bannister?

    Roger Bannister's height is 188

  • What is Roger Bannister's sun sign?

    Roger Bannister is Aries

  • How famous is Roger Bannister?

    Roger Bannister is famouse as Former British Athlete Who Ran The First Sub-Four-Minute Mile