Lincoln Causeway

Do you know for whom the Lincoln Causeway is named?

Merv Lincoln, once local boy and Olympic runner, being the third Australian in the world to break 4 minutes for the mile.

Merv’s parents were partners in the High Street store Lincoln and Butterworth from 1945.

Merv got his start in running in Wodonga. Starting Price bookmaking was alive and well in those days. There was a lane which went between their shop and the Terminus Hotel to the Carriers Arms Hotel. The S.P. bookies had to look out for the Police. And so he was the spotter. He was at the Carriers Arms Hotel and he would look for the Police and if he saw anybody who looked like a policeman he had to run and tell them to spread, if it looked as if they were going to have some unwanted company.

The person who was his first coach when it came to running was a well-known identity in town— his name was Chooker Elkington. In Form 4 at Wodonga Higher Elementary School they had house sports and the longest event was 880 yards and Merv won that. The combined school sports were to be held at Benalla. So Chooka was his trainer for that. He set a schedule for Merv and the schedule was this … they lived behind the shop and about 8.30 each night, when there was nobody around, Merv was to go out on High Street, run down High Street to South Street, run down South Street to the Carriers Arms, along Station Street to the railway yards, back to High Street and back to our shop. Merv was do that 6 laps in the first week, 10 laps the second week and 14 laps the third week.

Merv went on to bigger things, he ran 3 mins 59 secs on a Saturday in March 1957.

Dr Merv Lincoln retired from competitive running in 1960 following the Rome Olympics and took up an academic career receiving a Doctorate of Philosophy in 1983 from the University of Melbourne.  Dr Lincoln passed away in May last year aged 82.