Event to commemorate NI’s first sub four-minute mile

Kip Keino during the 1967 race followed by Ian McCafferty, Derek Graham and Billy Bryans
Kip Keino during the 1967 race followed by Ian McCafferty, Derek Graham and Billy Bryans

A special commemorative event will be held in Belfast next week to mark the 50th anniversary of the breaking of the four-minute mile in Northern Ireland.

Paisley Park on Belfast’s West Circular Road –the home ground of Amateur League football club Albert Foundry – was the scene of the first sub four-minute mile in the Province, set by one of the sport’s biggest stars of the time, Kip Keino.

The Kenyan Commonwealth and future Olympic champion made history back in 1967 by being the first person in Ulster to achieve the feat.

He was followed home in second place by Ulsterman Derek Graham, who also managed to get inside the magic mark.

The pair – along with former Olympic pentathlon champion Dame Mary Peters – will be in attendance at Paisley Park from 6.30pm next Wednesday for an athletics meeting to commemorate that special day half a century ago.

Albertville Harriers, in association with Albert Foundry FC, is marking the anniversary with an invitational running event followed by speeches, presentations and refreshments.

There will be two running events – a mile run and a mile relay run. Six running clubs in Belfast have been invited to provide four or more runners for the two competitions.