Mike Agostini

23 Jan 1935
12 May 2016
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Michael George Raymond “Mike” Agostini (23 January 1935 – 12 May 2016) was a Trinidadian track and field athlete. He was the first athlete from his country to win a gold medal at what is now known as the Commonwealth Games, when he won the 100 yards final in Vancouver, Canada, on 31 July 1954.

Agostini participated in athletics, football, and boxing in his school days. In 1952, at Kingston, he defeated Jamaican sprinter Herb McKenley, who had won one gold and two silver medals at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. On a scholarship, Agostini enrolled at Villanova University, where he received training from Jumbo Elliott. On 23 January 1954, his 19th birthday, he set a world indoor record for over 100 yards at Washington, beating Olympic champion Lindy Remigino.The same year, he competed in the 1954 Commonwealth Games at Vancouver, Canada, and won gold in the 100 yards race . He defeated Canadian Don McFarlane  and Australian Hec Hogan , becoming the first athlete from Trinidad and Tobago to win gold at the Commonwealth Games.

In the next Commonwealth Games at Cardiff in 1958, he stood third in the 100 yards run behind Keith Gardner of Jamaica and Tom Robinson of Bahamas. Agostini won another gold in the 1959 British West Indies Championships in the 100 m and a bronze in the 200 m.

Agostini had also represented Trinidad and Tobago at the Men’s 100 m and Men’s 200 m at the 1956 Summer Olympics, ranking 6th and 4th, respectively.

He worked as a freelance journalist and as a teacher for a brief time, and also served as editor and publisher for Track and Field magazine in the mid-1960s. He edited numerous periodicals and authored nine books. In 2007, Mike Agostini was inducted into the Fresno County Athletic Hall of Fame. In his later years, he suffered from arthritis and pancreatic cancer. He died on 12 May 2016 of cancer in Sydney.

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