George McNeill

George McNeill

George started his sporting career as a professional footballer playing part time with Hibs Morton & Stirling Albion.

He gave up his football to concentrate on athletics because as he had signed professional forms as a footballer.

He therefore had to concentrate on the professional running circuit.

He started by winning the 1970 centenary Powderhall Sprint in Edinburgh – which is the oldest and most renowned professional race.

After his victory at Powderhall he continued to improve to world class times and in August of 1970 he set a new professional world record for 120 yards at the press charities sports at Meadowbank Stadium in Edinburgh.

On January 1st 1971 he ran 110 metres in 11.00 seconds which equates to around 10 seconds for the more popular 100 metres.

In 1972 he won the World professional sprint title when he defeated Olympic gold medallist Tommie Smith in a four race series at Wakefield.

Throughout the seventies he continued to run on the relatively small highland games circuit in Scotland as well as travelling to the more lucrative professional scene in Australia.

In 1975 he had the opportunity to run against world class opposition when the newly formed International Track Circuit came to the UK.

George went on to win the biggest professional race in the world in 1981 when he won the Stawell Gift in Australia.

Throughout his career he also had to run the small family business where his training as a chartered quantity surveyor was put to good use.

On retiring from athletics George has involved himself with fitness coaching with various football teams including Livingston F.C. where he was part of a management team that took them from the Scottish 3rd Division into the Scottish Premier Division and a place in Europe in the space of eight years.

He currently delivers excellent after dinner and motivational speeches.

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