Athletics News

This Day in Track & Field -February 4, it’s all about Glenn Cunnigham!

This Day in Track & Field -February 4, it's all about Glenn Cunnigham!

This Day in Track & Field–February 4

(1st Wanamaker Mile, Cunningham, 55m?, Olson-19′, “94 Millrose, Lagat, Duplantis, Nilsen-AR/Birthdays-Stefanídi, Gompers, Julie Brown, Carrigan, Arne Åhman)


1926–Running before 16,000 fans at Madison Square Garden, James J. Connolly won the first Wanamaker Mile at the Millrose Games in NY (4:17.2). In the ten previous editions of the meet, the event was conducted at 1-1/2 miles.

The show’s star, though, was Norway’s Charles Hoff, who set the first of his eleven World Indoor Records in the Pole Vault with his clearance of 13-1 (3.99).

Hoff showed versatility by finishing 3rd in the 600y, a star-studded race won by Alan Helffrich in 1:12.7. Johnny Gibson was 2nd, Canada’s Allen Christie 4th, and Adriaan Paulen 5th.

Helffrich was a gold medalist in the 4×400 relay at the 1924 Olympics and was a 2-time NCAA ½-mile champion(1922-

   1923) while at Penn State.

    Gibson, a 1928 Olympian in the 400-meter hurdles(and world record holder in the event), became the

    coach at Seton Hall for more than 25 years and, like Helfrrich, was a long-time official in the NY Metropolitan area.

          NY Times Obituary:

Paulen was a 3-time Dutch Olympian who went on to become the president of the IAAF from 1976-1981.

Other winners included Loren Murchison in the Men’s 40y (4.6), 60y (6.3), and 300y (32.1), and Rosa Grosse in the Women’s 50y (6.4). Murchison’s 3 wins gave him a record total of 14 at Millrose,

Murchison’s Wins

1919—70y Inv., 70y-Handicap


1922—50y, 60y

1923—60y, 300y

1924—60y, 300y

1925—50y, 60y

1926—40y, 60y, 300y

Glenn Cunningham probably races in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Please note scars on legs from fire injuries as a child. Photo courtesy of Peter F. Murphy, JR. Copyright 2024 by Kansas Historical Society, all rights reserved.

1933–Kansas sophomore Glenn Cunningham (4:13.0) won the 1st of his 6 Wanamaker Miles in front of a Madison Square Garden record crowd of 17,000 fans. 8 yards back in 2nd was the previous year’s winner, Gene Venzke, the World Indoor Record holder.


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