Ray Barbuti

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameRaymond James "Ray"•Barbuti
Used nameRay•Barbuti
Nick/petnamesOrange Flash
Born12 June 1905 in Brooklyn, New York, New York (USA)
Died8 July 1988 in Pittsfield, Massachusetts (USA)
Measurements183 cm / 82 kg
AffiliationsNYAC, New York (USA)
NOC United States
Medals OG
Gold 2
Silver 0
Bronze 0
Total 2


Barbuti won his only AAU title in 1928, when the 400 m final was run in a gale force wind and Barbuti’s rugged strength enabled him to win in a seemingly modest 51.8. He improved that to 47.8 at the Olympics when he was the only American to win an individual track title. He was brought onto the relay team at the last minute and led the U.S. to a new world record of 3:14.2. The following week he (with George Baird, Morgan Taylor, and Bud Spencer) claimed a share in a second world record when the U.S. ran 3:13.4 for the 4×440y in London in the match against the British Empire team. Barbuti captained both the football and track teams at Syracuse. During his war service he was awarded the Air Medal and the Bronze Star and left the army air corps as a major. He later became deputy director of the Civil Defense Commission for New York State and director of the New York State Office of Disaster Preparedness. After his competitive days were over he was more interested in football than track and he officiated at more than 500 intercollegiate games.

Personal Best: 400 – 47.8 (1928).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1928 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Ray Barbuti
400 metres, Men (Olympic) 1 Gold
4 × 400 metres Relay, Men (Olympic) United States 1 Gold