David Wilkie, a Scottish sporting trailblazer, stunned the world of swimming when he won Olympic gold and set a new world record in 1976. 

Born to Aberdonian parents in Sri Lanka in 1954, David learned to swim at the open-air pool at Colombo Swimming Club and it was when he went to school in Edinburgh at the age of 11 that he joined Warrender Baths under the tutelage of Frank Thomas.

After breaking into the Scottish senior squad and representing Britain in 1969, David won bronze at the Edinburgh 1970 Commonwealth Games and raised eyebrows by wearing a swim cap, which would soon become the global norm.

An Olympic silver medal in the 200m breaststroke followed in 1972, but second-best was not enough to satisfy his competitive drive and he would follow up with a wondrous performance in GB colours four years later, two years after winning Commonwealth gold for Scotland in Christchurch, New Zealand.

David was a student at the University of Miami in the USA during the 1972-1976 cycle, and it was there that he attained the extra competitive edge that would make him a household name back home.

He dominated the 200m breaststroke at the Montreal 1976 Olympic Games, setting a new world record time of 2mins, 15.11secs in the process, and also picked up a silver in the 100m breaststroke.

In 1977 David, who went on to become a successful entrepreneur, was awarded the MBE and was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame five years later. Today the combination of cap and goggles, which he popularised, is a universal feature of the sport.

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