Ray Norton

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameOtis Ray•Norton
Used nameRay•Norton
Born22 September 1937 in Tulsa, Oklahoma (USA)
Measurements188 cm / 81 kg
AffiliationsSanta Clara Valley Youth Village, Santa Clara (USA)
NOC United States


Ray Norton was the world’s top sprinter from 1958 thru early 1960, setting three world records in the 100y in 1958 and 1960, one in the 100 in 1959, and five in the 200 metres in 1959-60. He was AAU champion in the sprint double in both 1959 and 1960, and NCAA 200 champion in 1959. In 1959, he also won three gold medals at the Pan American Games in 100 m, 200 m, and 4×100 m (with Hayes Jones and the non-Olympians Robert Poynter and Bill Woodhouse). Norton then won the 1960 Olympic Trials in both the 100 and 200 and entered Roma as heavy favorite in both sprints. But he performed poorly in Roma, placing sixth in both the 100 and 200, and in the final of the 4×100 relay, he outran the exchange zone, causing the United States team to be disqualified. He had a brief career in the NFL with the San Francisco 49ers as a runner and kick returner in 1960-61.

Personal Bests: 100 – 10.1 (1959); 200 – 20.5 (1960).


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1960 Summer Olympics Athletics USA Ray Norton
100 metres, Men (Olympic) 6
200 metres, Men (Olympic) 6
4 × 100 metres Relay, Men (Olympic) United States AC r3/3

Special Notes