A marine chronometer is a timepiece, precise and accurate enough to be used as a portable time standard. When first developed in the 18th century, it was a major technical achievement, as accurate knowledge of the time over a long sea voyage is necessary for navigation, lacking electronic or communications aids; the first true chronometer was the life work of one man, John Harrison, spanning 31 years of persistent experimentation and testing that revolutionized naval navigation and enabling the Age of Discovery and Colonialism to accelerate. The term chronometer was coined from the Greek words chronos and meter in 1714 by Jeremy Thacker, an early competitor for the prize set by the Longitude Act in the same year, it has become more used to describe watches tested and certified to meet certain precision standards. Timepieces made in Switzerland may display the word "chronometer" only if certified by the COSC. To determine a position on the Earth's surface, it is necessary and sufficient to know the latitude and altitude.
Altitude considerations can be ignored for vessels operating at sea level. Until the mid-1750s, accurate navigation at sea out of sight of land was an unsolved problem due to the difficulty in calculating longitude. Navigators could determine their latitude by measuring the sun's angle at noon or, in the Northern Hemisphere, to measure the angle of Polaris from the horizon. To find their longitude, they needed a time standard that would work aboard a ship. Observation of regular celestial motions, such as Galileo's method based on observing Jupiter's natural satellites, was not possible at sea due to the ship's motion; the lunar distances method proposed by Johannes Werner in 1514, was developed in parallel with the marine chronometer. The Dutch scientist Gemma Frisius was the first to propose the use of a chronometer to determine longitude in 1530; the purpose of a chronometer is to measure the time of a known fixed location, for example Greenwich Mean Time. This is important for navigation. Knowing GMT at local noon allows a navigator to use the time difference between the ship's position and the Greenwich Meridian to determine the ship's longitude.
As the Earth rotates at a regular rate, the time difference between the chronometer and the ship's local time can be used to calculate the longitude of the ship relative to the Greenwich Meridian using spherical trigonometry. In modern practice, a nautical almanac and trigonometric sight-reduction tables permit navigators to measure the Sun, visible planets, or any of 57 selected stars for navigation at any time that the horizon is visible; the creation of a timepiece which would work reliably at sea was difficult. Until the 20th century, the best timekeepers were pendulum clocks, but both the rolling of a ship at sea and the up to 0.2% variations in the gravity of Earth made a simple gravity-based pendulum useless both in theory and in practice. Christiaan Huygens, following his invention of the pendulum clock in 1656, made the first attempt at a marine chronometer in 1673 in France, under the sponsorship of Jean-Baptiste Colbert. In 1675, receiving a pension from Louis XIV, invented a chronometer that employed a balance wheel and a spiral spring for regulation, instead of a pendulum, opening the way to marine chronometers and modern pocket watches and wristwatches.
He obtained a patent for his invention from Colbert. Huygens' attempt in 1675 to obtain an English patent from Charles II stimulated Robert Hooke, who claimed to have conceived of a spring-driven clock years earlier, to attempt to produce one and patent it. During 1675 Huygens and Hooke each delivered two such devices to Charles, but none worked well and neither Huygens nor Hooke received an English patent, it was during this work. The first published use of the term was in 1684 in Arcanum Navarchicum, a theoretical work by Kiel professor Matthias Wasmuth; this was followed by a further theoretical description of a chronometer in works published by English scientist William Derham in 1713. Derham's principal work, Physico-theology, or a demonstration of the being and attributes of God from his works of creation proposed the use of vacuum sealing to ensure greater accuracy in the operation of clocks. Attempts to construct a working marine chronometer were begun by Jeremy Thacker in England in 1714, by Henry Sully in France two years later.
Sully published his work in 1726 with Une Horloge inventée et executée par M. Sulli, but neither his nor Thacker's models were able to resist the rolling of the seas and keep precise time while in shipboard conditions. In 1714, the British government offered a longitude prize for a method of determining longitude at sea, with the awards ranging from £10,000 to £20,000 depending on accuracy. John Harrison, a Yorkshire carpenter, submitted a project in 1730, in 1735 completed a clock based on a pair of counter-oscillating weighted beams connected by springs whose motion was not influenced by gravity or the motion of a ship, his first two sea timepieces H1 and H2 used this system, but he realised that they had a fundamental sensitivity to centrifugal force, which meant that they could never be accurate enough at sea. Construction
John Walker (runner)
Sir John George Walker, is a former middle-distance runner from New Zealand who won the 1500 m event at the 1976 Olympics. He was the first person to run the mile in under 3:50. In more recent years, Walker has been active in local government, as an Auckland Councillor and representing the Manurewa-Papakura ward. Walker achieved world prominence in 1974 when he ran second to Filbert Bayi in the 1500 metre run at the Commonwealth Games in Christchurch, New Zealand. In one of the greatest 1500 m races held to that time and Bayi both broke the existing world record, others in the race recorded the fourth and seventh fastest performances ever. Additionally, Walker won the bronze medal in the 800 metres in 1:44.92, his lifetime best for the distance, still the second-fastest New Zealander behind Peter Snell. Throughout his career as a world-class miler Walker was coached by Arch Jelley, a school principal, a middle distance runner himself, whose work with runners has been typified by meticulous training programmes on a scientific basis and effective communications in person.
Walker broke the World Record in the mile run with a time of 3:49.4 minutes set at Göteborg, Sweden, on 12 August 1975, bettering the previous time of 3:51.0 set earlier that year by Filbert Bayi. It was the first time that the Three minutes and 50 seconds time had been broken, it was a full 10 seconds faster than Roger Bannister's historic sub-Four-Minute Mile of 3:59.4, run twenty-one years previous. He was named Athlete of the Year by Field News the same year. Walker's new record lasted until 17 July 1979; the following year Walker broke the world record for the 2000 metres, running 4:51.4 in Oslo, Norway, on 30 June 1976. He smashed the existing ten-year-old record held by Michel Jazy by nearly five seconds. Steve Cram broke the record on 4 August 1985, running 4:51.39 at Hungary. Indoors, Walker broke the 1500 metre world record with a time of 3:37.4 in 1979. In the 800 metres Walker failed to advance to the semi-finals missing the top two qualifying spots in his heat running a time of 1:47.63.
However Walker was a favourite to win the 1500 metres due to the African boycott of the Games weakening the field. The 1500 metres final started at a slow pace going through 800 metres in 2:03; the race would come down to a fast finish. In a bid to out-sprint runners who were quicker over 800 metres, Walker started his finishing sprint 300 metres from the finish, fading in the last 20 metres but holding out Ivo Van Damme and Paul-Heinz Wellmann to win the gold medal. Although it seemed that the boycott denied Bayi the opportunity to challenge for the 1500 metre title, Bayi would not have competed because of an attack of malaria. In 1977 Walker saw his position as the world's top miler challenged by Steve Ovett, who beat him in the IAAF World Cup 1500m. During 1981 he set a New Zealand all-comers' mile record of 3:50.6 in Auckland. In 1982 in Oslo, Steve Scott, John Walker, Ray Flynn took the top three spots in The Dream Mile, establishing American, New Zealand, Irish national records for the mile in the same race.
All three national records stood for 25 years until 21 July 2007, when Alan Webb broke Scott's American record. Walker and Flynn's times remain national records. At the 1982 Commonwealth Games in Brisbane he won the silver medal in the 1500 metres finishing behind Steve Cram, he moved up to the 5000 metres distance for both the 1984 Olympic Games and the 1986 Commonwealth Games with limited success. He raced at the 1990 Commonwealth Games competing in both the 800 and 1500 metres, where he was tripped early on in the latter. Walker became the first man in history to run 100 sub-4 minute miles in 1985, achieving that feat just before fellow miler Steve Scott of the United States. There was some controversy around this as Scott claimed there was an agreement that the two would race each other, with the winner being the first to claim 100 sub-4 minute miles. Walker denied; as his career wore on, leg injuries and stomach cramps started to affect his training. In the early 1990s he aimed to be the first runner aged over 40 to run a mile under four minutes, but his attempts failed due to a leg injury.
At this point his international career had shown unusual longevity – spanning two decades. Walker ended his racing career with 135 sub-four-minute miles, he was inducted into the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame in 1990, in 1996 the Olympic Committee awarded him with the Olympic Bronze Order. In 1996, Walker announced, he now operates an equestrian shop in Newmarket in Auckland, New Zealand with his wife and was a Manukau City Councillor, after which he became a councillor for the merged Auckland Council. In 2016, Walker was reelected in the Manurewa-Papakura ward for a third consecutive term. Walker and his wife have four children: Elizabeth, Richard and Caitlin. On 1 June 2009 in the Queen's Birthday Honours List, Walker was appointed Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. John Walker at the New Zealand Olympic Committee Page with Photo, one of two at Sporting Heroes IAAF BiographyVideo linksVideo Interview of John Walker talking about his Olympic Win
John Michael Landy is a retired Australian middle-distance runner and politician. He was the second man to break the four-minute mile barrier in the mile run, held the world records for the 1500 metre run and the mile race, he was the 26th Governor of Victoria from 2001 to 2006. Born in Melbourne, John Landy attended Geelong Grammar School, he graduated from Melbourne University in 1954. During his school years, Landy enjoyed watching middle distance track events, he became a serious runner during his college years, joining the Geelong Guild Athletic Club in 1949. On 21 June 1954, at an international meet at Turku, Landy became the second man, after Roger Bannister, to achieve a sub-4-minute mile, recording a world record time of 3:57.9, ratified by the IAAF as 3:58.0 owing to the rounding rules in effect. That record held for more than three years. Worldwide, Landy is best known for his part in a mile race in the 1954 British Empire and Commonwealth Games, held at Vancouver, British Columbia. Landy ran his second sub-4-minute mile in the race, but lost to Roger Bannister, who had his best-ever time.
This meeting of the world's two fastest milers was called "The Miracle Mile", the "Race of the Century" and the "Dream Race". On the final turn of the last lap, as Landy looked over his left shoulder, Bannister passed him on the right. A larger-than-life bronze sculpture of the two men at this moment was created by Vancouver sculptor Jack Harman in 1967 from a photograph by Vancouver Sun photographer Charlie Warner and stood for many years at the entrance to Empire Stadium. In 2015 it returned to the site of the stadium. Regarding this sculpture, Landy quipped that "While Lot's wife was turned into a pillar of salt for looking back, I am the only one turned into bronze for looking back." In Australia, Landy is remembered for his performance in the one mile final at the 1956 Australian National Championships prior to the Melbourne Olympic Games. In the race, Landy stopped and doubled back to check on fellow runner Ron Clarke after another runner clipped Clarke's heel, causing him to fall early in the third lap of the race.
Clarke, the then-junior mile world record holder, leading the race, got back to his feet and started running again. In the final two laps Landy made up a large deficit to win the race, something considered one of the greatest moments in Australian sporting history. Said the National Centre for History and Education in Australia, "It was a spontaneous gesture of sportsmanship and it has never been forgotten." Sculptor Mitch Mitchell created a bronze sculpture of the moment when Landy helps Clarke to his feet. It has been moved from the north west corner of Punt Road and Swan Street to Olympic Park, Melbourne. On 1 January 2001, Landy was sworn in as the 26th Governor of Victoria, he was appointed by Premier of Victoria Steve Bracks. On 15 March 2006, in the final month of his term as governor, John Landy was the final runner in the Queen's Baton relay during the 2006 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony at the MCG stadium in Melbourne, presenting the baton to the Queen by placing it in its specially constructed holder.
He retired as governor on 7 April 2006. John Landy worked as senior manager at ICI Australia, had a successful public speaking career. For eight years Landy served on the Victorian Land Conservation Council, contributing to debates and recommendations about the balanced use of public land across Victoria. An avid naturalist, Landy has written two books on natural history, he was Commissioner-General for the Australian exhibit at Expo 92. On 12 February 2009 Landy was appointed the chair of the Victorian Bushfire Appeal Fund Advisory Panel, he stood down from the position on 7 September that same year. In 1955, John Landy was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire for services to sport, was awarded the Australian Sports Medal in 2000, in 2001 he was awarded the Centenary Medal, made a Companion of the Order of Australia and a Knight of Grace of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem. In 2006 he was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order during the Queen's visit to Australia.
He was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1985. Over the years, Landy has been awarded numerous honorary degrees, the first being a Doctor of Laws from the University of Victoria in 1994. In 1997, a Doctor of Rural Science from the University of New England, followed by a Doctor of Laws from the University of Melbourne in 2003 and Doctor of Laws from Deakin University in 2009. On 12 July 2008, John Landy was the guest speaker at his club's Centenary Dinner held at North Geelong. Landy has been a Life Member of the Geelong Guild Athletic Club since April 1958. Named after Landy, Landy Field in South Geelong is the Geelong region's major athletic facility. East Doncaster Secondary College has a VCE centre dedicated in Landy's honour. Central Park, in Malvern East, Melbourne has a sports oval dedicated to John Landy with a plaque which reads in part "Named in honour of John Landy, resident of Central Park Road, who used this oval for his traini
John Harrison was a self-educated English carpenter and clockmaker who invented the marine chronometer, a long-sought-after device for solving the problem of calculating longitude while at sea. Harrison's solution revolutionized navigation and increased the safety of long-distance sea travel; the problem he solved was considered so important following the Scilly naval disaster of 1707 that the British Parliament offered financial rewards of up to £20,000 under the 1714 Longitude Act. In 1730, Harrison presented his first design, worked over many years on improved designs, making several advances in time-keeping technology turning to what were called sea watches. Harrison gained support from the Longitude Board in testing his designs. Toward the end of his life, he received a reward from Parliament. Harrison came 39th in the BBC's 2002 public poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. John Harrison was born in Foulby in the West Riding of Yorkshire, the first of five children in his family, his step father worked as a carpenter at the nearby Nostell Priory estate.
A house on the site of what may have been the family home bears a blue plaque. Around 1700, the Harrison family moved to the Lincolnshire village of Barrow upon Humber. Following his father's trade as a carpenter, Harrison built and repaired clocks in his spare time. Legend has it that at the age of six, while in bed with smallpox, he was given a watch to amuse himself and he spent hours listening to it and studying its moving parts, he had a fascination for music becoming choirmaster for Barrow parish church. Harrison built his first longcase clock in 1713, at the age of 20; the mechanism was made of wood. Three of Harrison's early wooden clocks have survived: the first is in the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers' collection in the Guildhall in London, since 2015 on display in the Science Museum; the second is in the Science Museum in London. The Nostell example, in the billiards room of this stately home, has a Victorian outer case, which has small glass windows on each side of the movement so that the wooden workings may be inspected.
In the early 1720s, Harrison was commissioned to make a new turret clock at Brocklesby Park, North Lincolnshire. The clock still works, like his previous clocks has a wooden movement of oak and lignum vitae. Unlike his early clocks, it incorporates some original features to improve timekeeping, for example the grasshopper escapement. Between 1725 and 1728, John and his brother James a skilled joiner, made at least three precision longcase clocks, again with the movements and longcase made of oak and lignum vitae; the grid-iron pendulum was developed during this period. These precision clocks are thought by some to have been the most accurate clocks in the world at the time. Number 1, now in a private collection, belonged to the Time Museum, USA, until the museum closed in 2000 and its collection was dispersed at auction in 2004. Number 2 is in the Leeds City Museum, it forms the core of a permanent display dedicated to John Harrison's achievements, "John Harrison: The Clockmaker Who Changed the World" and had its official opening on 23 January 2014, the first longitude-related event marking the tercentenary of the Longitude Act.
Number 3 is in the Worshipful Company of Clockmakers' collection. Harrison was a man of many skills and he used these to systematically improve the performance of the pendulum clock, he invented the gridiron pendulum, consisting of alternating brass and iron rods assembled so that the thermal expansions and contractions cancel each other out. Another example of his inventive genius was the grasshopper escapement – a control device for the step-by-step release of a clock's driving power. Developed from the anchor escapement, it was frictionless, requiring no lubrication because the pallets were made from wood; this was an important advantage at a time when lubricants and their degradation were little understood. In his earlier work on sea clocks, Harrison was continually assisted, both financially and in many other ways, by George Graham, the watchmaker and instrument maker. Harrison was introduced to Graham by the Astronomer Royal Edmond Halley, who championed Harrison and his work; this support was important to Harrison, as he was supposed to have found it difficult to communicate his ideas in a coherent manner.
Longitude fixes the location of a place on Earth east or west of a north-south line called the prime meridian. It is given as an angular measurement that ranges from 0° at the prime meridian to +180° eastward and −180° westward. Knowledge of a ship's east-west position was essential. After a long voyage, cumulative errors in dead reckoning led to shipwrecks and a great loss of life. Avoiding such disasters became vital in Harrison's lifetime, in an era when trade and navigation were increasing around the world. Many ideas were proposed for. Earlier methods attempted to compare local time with the known time at a reference place, such as Greenwich or Paris, based on a simple theory, first proposed by Gemma Frisius; the methods relied on astronomical observations that were themselves reliant on the predictable nature of the motions of different heavenly bodies. Such methods were problematic because of the difficulty in estimating the time at the reference place. Harrison set out to solve the problem directly, by producing a reliable clock that could keep the time of the reference place.
His difficulty was in producing a clock tha
A pacemaker or pacesetter, sometimes informally called a rabbit, is a runner who leads a middle- or long distance running event for the first section to ensure a fast time and avoid excessive tactical racing. Pacemakers are employed by race organisers for world record attempts with specific instructions for lap times; some athletes have become professional pacemakers. A competitor who chooses the tactic of leading in order to win is called a front-runner rather than a pacemaker. Pacemakers may be used to avoid the tactics of deception that are possible in competition by those who, for example, race away from the start line, giving the other runners the impression that they are far behind. A trusted team of pacemakers who are paid to keep the runners at a speed that they can manage for the rest of the race become useful in such a situation. Pacemakers are used on world record attempts in order to make sure that the runner knows where their invisible'opponent' predecessor is at that stage of the race.
Pacemakers serve the role of conveying tangible information about pacing on the track during a race. Pacemakers may facilitate drafting. Pacemaking gained much usage after Chris Brasher and Chris Chataway paced Roger Bannister to break the four-minute mile for the first time in 1954. Purists argue. Original rules frowned on a competitor, not trying to win, pacemakers were required to finish a race for any record to count; this rule has now been dropped, though the pacemaker must still start with the other athletes in the race as a registered entrant. A lapped competitor may not act as a pacemaker; the 1500 metres at the Bislett Games in 1981 became part of track folklore when star athletes including Steve Ovett chose not to follow pacemaker Tom Byers but race among themselves. Ovett's last lap was 10 seconds faster than Byers's, but Byers held on to win by a few metres. A similar case occurred in the 1994 Los Angeles Marathon when veteran marathoner Paul Pilkington was paid to set a fast pace drop out.
When the elite athletes failed to follow his pace, he kept going winning $27,000 and a new Mercedes to the surprise of the expected favourites. That year, the L. A. Marathon was the National Championship race, so he became the United States National Champion. Brazilian Vanderlei De Lima the marathon bronze medalist in the 2004 Summer Olympics, was a pacemaker at the Reims Marathon in 1994, it was his first competitive marathon, he was supposed to be a pacemaker up to the 21 km point, but won the race. During the Berlin Marathon in 2000, Simon Biwott was hired as a pacemaker, but crossed the finish line as the winner; the rules for pacemakers state, 3 of them at most are dedicated to one group of runners. In the 2003 Berlin Marathon, Paul Tergat set a new world record with 2:04:55. In the run, the pacemaker Sammy Korir finished 1 second behind in second place. At 21,5 miles into the run, Korir tried to make on move on Tergat. Pacemakers are used in horse racing, where mediocre horses may be entered into major races to set the pace for superior horses from the same stable.
On a few occasions, pacemakers have finished ahead of the horses they were setting the pace for, such as when Summoner won the 2001 Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, At First Sight running second in the 2010 Epsom Derby ahead of his two more-favoured stablemates. Domestique Pacer Pacing strategies in track and field
Sir Christopher John Chataway known as Chris Chataway, was a British middle- and long-distance runner, television news broadcaster, Conservative politician. He was born in Chelsea, the son of James Denys Percival Chataway, OBE, he spent his childhood in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan, as his father was a member of the Sudan Political Service. He was educated at Sherborne School — where he excelled at rugby and gymnastics but did not win a race until he was 16 — and Magdalen College, where he gained a philosophy and economics degree, but his studies were overshadowed by his success on the athletics track as a long-distance runner. Chataway had a distinguished athletics career. At the Helsinki Olympic Games of 1952, in the 5000 metres final, after being passed on the last bend by the Czech long distance runner, Emil Zátopek, France's Alain Mimoun, West Germany's Herbert Schade, Chataway's foot brushed the curb and he crashed headlong to the ground. Chataway managed to finish the race in fifth place.
On leaving university he took an executive job with Guinness. When Sir Hugh Beaver of Guinness came up with the idea for the Guinness Book of Records, it was Chataway who suggested his old university friends Norris and Ross McWhirter as editors, knowing of their liking for facts. Chataway continued with his running; when Roger Bannister ran the first sub-four minute mile on 6 May 1954 at Oxford University's Iffley Road Track and Chris Brasher were his pacemakers. He finished in second place in the 5000 m at the European Athletics Championship of 1954, 12.2 seconds behind the winner Vladimir Kuts, but two weeks turned the tables at a London v. Moscow athletics competition at White City, setting a world record time of 13 minutes 51.6 seconds. The contest made Chataway a sporting celebrity. After competing in the 1956 Olympics, Chataway retired from international athletics, though he continued to race for Thames Hare and Hounds. Soon after leaving Oxford with a degree in politics and economics, he decided to aim for a political career.
He thought a suitable job in the expanding world of television might help. He refused offers in sports TV and with panel and quiz shows but secured a job in August 1955 with ITN, he and Robin Day were its first two newscasters. After six months, when loss-making ITV cut back on its news output, Chataway switched to the BBC and was for three and a half years one of Panorama's regarded team of reporters with a different assignment each week sometimes at home but abroad. By this time he was considering another career, this time in politics, he had been narrowly elected as a Conservative to the London County Council in 1958 in Lewisham North, was selected to stand for Parliament in the same seat. Lewisham North was a marginal seat won by Labour in a by-election in 1957, but Chataway's charm helped to win the seat with a majority bigger than it had been in the previous general election, his maiden speech expressed the hope that the England cricket team would refuse to play a tour in apartheid South Africa, a unusual opinion for a Conservative.
In Parliament, Chataway took up the issue of refugees in Africa, campaigned so hard during World Refugee Year that he was awarded a Nansen Medal. He served as a Parliamentary Private Secretary before being appointed as a junior Education Minister in July 1962. In the 1964 election, his majority was slashed to 343 and the seat looked distinctly vulnerable. In 1967 the Conservatives unexpectedly won control of the Inner London Education Authority and the party leadership was horrified to discover that their newly elected councillors were going to try to break up comprehensive schools and replace them with secondary modern and grammar schools. Chataway, with relevant ministerial experience, was persuaded to take over, he was appointed Leader of the Education Committee. Cajoling his colleagues into a more moderate line, he avoided a head-on collision with Edward Short and proceeded with those schemes for secondary reorganisation that he regarded as well founded. Chataway was keen to return to Parliament, the opportunity came in a byelection in Chichester in May 1969.
He resigned as ILEA Leader. With the return of a Conservative Government in 1970 after refusing the offer of Sports Minister he was appointed by Edward Heath as Minister for Posts and Telecommunications and made a Privy Counsellor. In this post he took charge of introducing commercial radio for the first time, ending the BBC monopoly, he introduced to parliament the complete end to the restrictions on broadcasting hours on television and radio. The restrictions on broadcasting hours were eased from early 1971 and lifted by October 1972. After a reshuffle in April 1972 he was Minister for Industrial Development; when the Conservatives were defeated in the February 1974 election, Chataway announced his retirement from politics and he did not seek re-election at the October 1974 election. He went into business becoming a Managing Director of Orion Bank, a consortium bank acquired by one of its shareholders, the Royal Bank of Canada, he stayed with Orion as Vice Chairman, for 15 years. He held various non-executive directorships.
He was the first Chairman of Groundwork, the environmental charity and Hon Treasurer of the National Campaign for Electoral Reform. His principal outside interest was ActionAid, a small overseas development charity, of which he became Hon Treasurer in 1974 and Chairman. By the time he left the
Steve Scott (athlete)
Steve Scott is an American former track athlete and one of the greatest mile runners in American history. The silver medalist in the 1500 meters at the inaugural IAAF World Championships in Athletics in Helsinki in 1983, Scott owns the U. S. indoor record in the 2000 meters. He held the American outdoor mile record for more than 26 years and is the former American indoor record holder in the same event. Track & Field News ranked Scott #1 in the U. S. on 10 occasions, 11 times during his career he was ranked in the top ten in the world by T&FN. Additionally, he participated for the US team at the 1984 Summer Olympics, he ran the sub-4:00 minute mile on 136 occasions in his career, more than any other runner in history. Scott is regarded as the founder of speed golf in 1979. Using only two clubs and running from hole to hole, he posted a respectable score of 95. Scott grew up in the 1960s in Calif.. His mother was a runner, his father was an overweight physician who did not see the value of running.
Through his mother's influence and a coach's persistence, Scott ran on Upland's cross country team. The persistent coach was Robert Loney, cross country coach and math instructor at Upland High School. Steve caught track fever watching the 1972 Olympics on television, as U. S. runner Dave Wottle won the gold medal in the 800 meters. Wottle is remembered for running the Olympic final in a golf cap, which he forgot to take off during the medal ceremony while the national anthem played. Wottle's cap inspired Scott, so he wore a cap in every race of the 1972 cross country season. In his junior year in high school, Scott made the varsity squad as the fifth runner. In track, he concentrated on the shorter distances and ran the 800 in 1:58 and the mile in 4:30, he met Kim Votaw, a freshman runner who would become his wife in 1979. The couple was divorced in 1994. In his senior year, Scott became the top runner on the cross country team and improved his track times to 1:52 in the 800 and 4:15 in the mile.
He finished fourth in the CIF California State Meet in the 880 yards and drew several college scholarship offers. He liked coach Len Miller and joined him at the University of California, Irvine in the fall of 1974, he still holds the UCI school record in the 1500, the UC Irvine Steve Scott Invitational is named after him. While at UCI, Scott won the 1977 NCAA Men's Outdoor Track and Field Championships Division-I 1500-meter title after winning the 1500 twice and the mile once at three previous NCAA Division-II meets. Scott ran his first sub-4:00 mile indoors at the Sunkist Invitational in Los Angeles in January 1977, his junior year in college; the following year, he blossomed from an unknown college runner to an international miler, competing on both sides of the Atlantic. When he graduated with a degree in social ecology in 1978, Scott had run 11 sub-4:00 miles; when Sebastian Coe set a mile record of 3:48.95 in Oslo on July 17, 1979, Scott finished second with a time of 3:51.11. Because records at the time were rounded up to the nearest tenth of a second, Scott missed tying Jim Ryun's American mile record of 3:51.1 by 1/100th of a second.
However, in 1981, the IAAF started to recognize records in running events longer than 400 meters to the hundredth of a second, meaning that Scott's 3:51.11 had tied Ryun's record, depending on how the times were interpreted. Scott won the 1,500 m at the 1980 U. S. Olympic Trials but did not compete at the Moscow Olympic Games due to the U. S. boycott. He did however receive one of 461 Congressional Gold Medals created for the spurned athletes, his greatest success at an Olympic or World championship came at the inaugural World Athletics Championships in Helsinki, Finland in 1983, when he won a silver medal behind Steve Cram. At the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles and the 1988 Games in Seoul, he placed 10th and 5th in the 1,500 m respectively, his greatest legacy was setting three American mile records. While there was uncertainty whether his 3:51.11 was at least equal to the American mile record or not, his first undisputed American record came when he ran third in another Oslo race on July 11, 1981 with a time of 3:49.68, becoming the first American to break 3:50 in the event and the fifth to do so.
South African Sydney Maree, in the process of gaining his American citizenship, ran 3:48.83 on September 9, 1981, though this time was not seen as being an American record. The following year Scott broke the American mile record twice, both times again at Oslo. First, he won a race on June 26, 1982 in 3:48.53, becoming history's third-fastest miler behind Coe and Steve Ovett. That time would stand as the American record for a quarter century until Alan Webb ran 3:46.91 in 2007. He was the 1500 m bronze medalist at the 1987 Pan American Games. Scott loved to race—indoors, outdoors, on the roads, in cross country—sometimes as many as 50 competitions a year; this included three top ten finishes in the U. S. National Cross Country Championships as well as three victories in the Carlsbad 5000 road race from 1986 to 1988, his times at Carlsbad in 1986 and 1988 were World Best times for a road 5K. Among his fellow middle distance runners, he was known as one of track & field’s fiercest competitors. During the decade that followed his first sub-4-minute mile, Scott lived out of a suitcase.
He traveled the world and competed year-round in the United States, Jamaica, Swede