Harold A. Wilson

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For other people named Harold Wilson, see Harold Wilson (disambiguation).
Harold A. Wilson
Harold Wilson 1910 Hassan card front.jpg
Harold A. Wilson
Medal record
Men's athletics
Competitor for  United Kingdom
Olympic Games
Gold 1908 London 3 miles team race
Silver 1908 London 1500 metres
Mel Sheppard narrowly defeating Harold Wilson in the 1500 metres race in the 1908 Olympic Games.
GB 1908 Olympic Games three-mile team race

Harold Allan Wilson (January 21, 1885 – ????) was an English athlete. Born in Horncastle, Lincolnshire, England, he won the silver medal in the men's 1500 metres race at the 1908 Summer Olympics in London, competing on the Great Britain and Ireland team. He was a member of the Hallamshire Harriers and the Irish American Athletic Club.

He was the first man to run a sub four minute 1,500 metres, with a time of 3:59.8 in May 1908.

In the 1908 Olympic Games Wilson won his semi-final in the 1500 metres with a time of 4:11.4; his time in the final was 4:03.6, fractions of a second behind America's premier runner of the day, Melvin Sheppard of the Irish American Athletic Club, with a time of 4:03.4. "Wilson won a trial heat in fast time, but in the final had to bow to the superior speed of America's premier runner, Melvin Sheppard, and in this event forced him to break the record for the distance to win."[1]

Wilson was also part of Britain's five-man gold medal-winning team in the three-miles team race. He was Britain's fourth man home in fifth place overall. His team-mates were Archie Robertson, Norman Hallows, Joe Deakin and William Coales.

The following year, Wilson was in Queens, New York, competing alongside Sheppard wearing the Winged Fist of the Irish American Athletic Club. He competed in the U.S. during the 1909 outdoor season, and was considered one of the best mile runners in competition. In 1909 he turned professional and met with a certain amount of success in Australia and South Africa.

It has been falsely reported that Wilson died in France in 1916. However, the Sheffield Green 'Un of 28 August 1920 stated: "Mr Mick Terry, manager of the South African team at Antwerp [for the Olympic Games] tells me that Harold is doing well in Durban at the Fern Villa Hotel. The rumour that he was killed in the war arose from confusion between his name and that of another man. Wilson went out to East Africa and was invalided out of the Army."

Terry was Wilson's manager when he was running professionally in South Africa before the war. His actual date and place of death are unknown.

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