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60 years ago, Roger Bannister ran into history by breaking 4-minute mile




Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Norman Potter/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Chris Brasher (1928 - 2003) takes the lead, closely followed by Roger Bannister during a historic race at Iffley Road, Oxford. This was the event which saw Bannister break the world record by running a mile in 3 minutes, 59.4 seconds.
Norman Potter/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
British athlete Chris Brasher (1928 - 2003) runs ahead of Roger Bannister, during the first lap of Bannister's record-breaking sub-4-minute mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford, England, 6th May 1954. Bannister ran the course in 59.4 seconds.
Keystone/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Britain's famed miler Roger Bannister (back) following pace man Chris Chataway, on the way to a new record of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds at Iffley Road, Oxford.
Norman Potter/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Roger Bannister crossing the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Keystone/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
English athlete Roger Bannister amongst a crowd at Oxford after becoming the first person in the world to run a mile in under 4 minutes, (3 min 59.4 seconds).
Norman Potter/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
Britain's famed miler Roger Bannister (centre) being congratulated by Chris Chataway after setting a new record of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds. On the left is Chris Brasher
Norman Potter/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
English athlete Roger Bannister is cheered by his fellow medical students at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, the day after he ran his record-breaking sub-four minute mile, London, 7th May 1954. (Photo by Douglas Miller/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Douglas Miller/Getty Images
Roger Bannister about to cross the tape at the end of his record breaking mile run at Iffley Road, Oxford. He was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes, with a time of 3 minutes 59.4 seconds.
English athlete Roger Bannister is chaired by his fellow medical students at St Mary's Hospital, Paddington, the day after he ran his record-breaking sub-four minute mile, London, 7th May 1954. (Photo by Douglas Miller/Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
Douglas Miller/Getty Images


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On May 6, 1954, on an Oxford University track, Roger Bannister made history by successfully running a mile in under four minutes.

His time, 3:59.4, is one of the biggest records to ever be broken in all of sports, and at the time was thought to be an impossible, even dangerous undertaking. John Bryant, author of the new book "Against the Clock: Beating the Four Minute Mile,” joins us to relive that day sixty years ago and what it meant for the running community around the world.