Jack Lovelock
Inducted in 1990
Lovelock was, in many ways, an athlete ahead of his time, bringing a more scientific and psychological approach to his sport than had hitherto been seen.
Sporting Category:
  • Athletics
His win in the Olympic Games 1500 metres final in Berlin in 1936 in world record time was the culmination of his career and, satisfied that he had achieved as close to perfection as could be achieved in sport, rarely ran afterward.

His time of 3min 47.8sec for the 1500 metres was recognised as the equivalent of a mile in about 4min 3s, showing that the four-minute barrier was not the miler’s impossible dream.

Berlin was the crowning glory of Lovelock’s career, but it was far from the only significant achievement. He won the Empire Games mile in London in 1934 (4min 12.8sec) and set a world mile record of 4min 7.6sec at Princeton in 1933.

He remains the only New Zealander to have held the world 1500 metres and mile records.

An indication of Lovelock’s approach to his running was his diary entry after he won the “Mile of the Century” in 1935: “... the chief thing was to demonstrate the fallacy of the invincibility of Cunningham, the `iron man’, which I did to my own satisfaction at least.”

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