Walt Murphy is one of the finest track geeks that I know. Walt does #ThisDayinTrack&FieldHistory, an excellent daily service providing the true geek’s stories about our sport. You can check out the service for FREE with a free one-month trial subscription! (email: WaltMurphy44@gmail.com ) for the entire daily service. We will post a few historic moments each day, beginning February 1, 2024.

This Day in Track & Field–February 8

by Walt Murphy’s News and Results Service  (wmurphy25@aol.com), used with permission.

(c)Copyright 2024-all rights reserved. It may not be reprinted or retransmitted without permission.

 1916—USC’s Howard Drew set a World Record of 10-flat for 100-yards at the NYAC Games, which were held at the 22nd Regiment Armory (the current Armory).

Drew had been favored to win the 100-meter at the 1912 Olympics but pulled a muscle while winning his semi-final race in Stockholm. Ralph Craig, who had been beaten by Drew at the Eastern U.S. Olympic Trials, won the gold medal in the 100 (and the 200).

Read more about Drew here: http://www.howarddrew.com/

A 2nd World Record was set by future Hall-of-Famer Ted Meredith, who ran 59.8 for 500 yards.

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1991–Competing at the Vitalis/Meadowlands Inv., where Eamonn Coghlan set the Mile World Record of 3:49.78 in 1983, 20-year-old Noureddine Morceli of Algeria fell short in his attempt to set a new mark (and collect the $100,000 bonus that was on the line). His winning time of  3:50.81 was still the 3rd-fastest in history, trailing only Coghlan, who had also run 3:50.6 in 1981.

        Only a year or two before that meeting, director Ray Lumpp received a call from his old friend, Ted Banks, who had been the head coach at UTEP during that school’s incredible NCAA run during the 1970s and early 1980s. Banks was now at Riverside Community College in California and was asking Lumpp if he had room in his mile for this promising young runner he was now coaching. Saying his field was packed, Lumpp politely turned down Banks’s request. The runner, of course, was Morceli!

Sports Illustrated Vault:


2020—Three American Records were set in 70 minutes at the Millrose Games at N.Y.’s Armory.

Donavan Brazier ran 1:44.22 in the Men’s 800 to break his own-year-old mark of 1:44.41.

This record was totally unexpected, with Elle (“Ellie”) Purrier, a farm girl from Vermont, smashing Mary Slaney’s 38-year-old mark of 4:20.5 with her winning time of 4:16.85 in the Women’s Wanamaker Mile.

Elle St. Pierre, photo by Jeff Benjamin

Ajee Wilson also took down her year-old record of 1:58.60 by winning the Women’s 800 (for the 5th time) in 1:58.29.

In other highlights, Scotland’s Chris O’Hare won the Men’s Wanamaker Mile in 3:55.61 for the 2nd time in 3 years, Ryan Crouser won the Men’s Shot Put (72-9  ¾ [22.19]) for the 2nd year in a row, beating Joe Kovacs (70-1/4[21.84]), his conqueror at the previous year’s World Championships in Doha, and Sandi Morris won the Women’s Pole Vault with a Meet Record clearance of 16-1  ¼ (4.91).

In the Men’s 3000, a race won by former Syracuse star Justyn Knight (7:46.36), Nico Young, a senior at Newbury Park(C.A.) H.S. finished 11th in 7:56.97 to break the U.S. High School Record of 7:59.33, set by Drew Hunter (Loudoun Valley, VA) in 2016.

There was the usual post-meet celebration at Coogan’s, but no one knew then that it would be the last one since the beloved gathering place shut its doors for good soon after due to the pandemic!








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