Merv Lincoln, Australian middle-distance runner, Died at 82


Mervyn George “Merv” Lincoln was born on November 22, 1933, and died on April 30, 2016.

He was an Australian middle-distance runner.

He was the winner of a silver medal in the mile run at the 1958 British Empire and Commonwealth Games and twice competed in the Summer Olympic Games.

Merv qualified for the 1500 metres final at the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, finishing 12th.

Lincoln was tipped as a potential successor to the retiring John Landy as Australia’s leading miler; notwithstanding newcomer Herb Elliott defeated him at the 1957 national championships.

Merv Lincoln ran his first four-minute mile on March 23, 1957, and the eleventh man in the world and the third Australian to accomplish that deed.

Merv Lincoln time of 3:58.9 was less than a second short of Landy’s world record of 3:58.0.

Even though he lost to Elliott at the Australian championships, Merv did also win a national championship mile that year, winning the United States championship race as an outside competitor.

Reportedly, the Track & Field News ranked him #7 in the world for 1957, one place below his Australian rival Elliott.

Merv Lincoln had reached his peak in 1958 but was overshadowed by the rapidly improving Elliott.

Merv Lincoln was coached by the Austrian-born Franz Stampfl, a bitter rival of Elliott’s coach Percy Cerutty.

And Stampfl stated Lincoln only trained one hour a day, in contrast to the harder training of Elliott.

Merv Lincoln passed away at 82 yrs old.