Bannister, Sir Roger Gilbert

Bannister, Sir Roger Gilbert, 1929–2018, British athlete and neurologist. On May 6, 1954, at Oxford's Iffley Road track, Bannister, a medical student, became the first man to run the mile in less than 4 min, a barrier many experts had long considered unbreakable. His time was 3 min 59.4 sec. Australia's John Landy and New Zealand's Peter Snell bettered the record that year, but in August, Bannister defeated Landy at the British Empire Games in Vancouver, clocking 3:58.8 in a thrilling race. For his accomplishments, he became Sports Illustrated's first Sportsman of the Year. He later was a distinguished neurologist and edited a standard textbook on disorders of the autonomic nervous system. He was knighted in 1975.

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