Fred wilt is a two time Olympian in the 10,000m (1948 and 1952), former world record holder in the indoor mile, the 1950 Sullivan Award winner and a 1992 NYAC Hall of Fame inductee.
Fred Wilt was born on December 4th, 1920 in Pendleton Indiana. He attended Indiana University where he won the 1941 NCAA national championship in the 2 miles.
As a middle distance runner for the New York Athletic Club in the late 1940s and early 50s, Wilt was recognized as one of the country’s elite athletes. He won the 1951 AAU national championship in the indoor mile, doing so in world record time (4:09.3). Additionally, at the 1951 Penn Relays, Wilt was selected to compete against Roger Bannister, a tacit acknowledgment that he was the USA’s best middle distance runner. In recognition of his achievements, Wilt was the 1950 winner of the Sullivan Award, given annually to the nation’s top amateur athlete.
Wilt is also a two time Olympian in the 10,000m, competing in the 1948 Games in London and the 1952 Games in Helsinki. His top finish came in 1948, in which placed 11th.
Wilt began his professional career working for the FBI. Notably, he recruited fellow NYAC Hall of Fame inductee and 1952 Olympic Champion in the steeplechase, Horace Ashenfelter, to join the Bureau as well. He later coached the women’s track and field team at Purdue University and also authored several books on the sport. His books, which detailed a litany of training methods used by athletes around the world, were regarded as essential texts for every runner.
Wilt passed away on September 7th, 1994 at the age of 73.