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200m/220yds contenders

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1200m/220yds contenders Empty 200m/220yds contenders Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:14 pm



Top 12 Contenders for the 200m/220yds spots
in the Pro Track Team of the Century

Tim Banner
Steve Brimacombe
Dean Capobianco
Terry Clarke (Recommended by JH)
John DeCoite
John Dinan
Jack Donaldson
Dave Irvine
Treva McGregor
Andrew McManus
Len Sprague
John Stoney

Austin Robertson

Last edited by youngy on Thu Aug 05, 2010 3:42 pm; edited 1 time in total

2200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Fri Aug 06, 2010 3:35 pm



Thank God It's Friday.

What about Showbags Richo?

3200m/220yds contenders Empty Jack Donaldson Sat Aug 07, 2010 1:05 pm



DONALDSON, JOHN (1886-1933), athlete, was born on 16 March 1886 at Raywood, Victoria, eldest child of John Donaldson and his wife Martha née Smith, both Victorian-born. Donaldson senior, a well-known sportsman in northern Victoria, was successively hairdresser, storekeeper, farmer and publican, becoming licensee of the Royal Hotel, Kerang, about 1900.

Educated at local state schools, young Jack Donaldson worked at a Kerang store and flour-mill, and trained and rode his father's trotters before devoting himself to professional running. After some success as a schoolboy athlete Donaldson first became widely known in 1906 when he ran second in the Stawell Gift, travelled overnight to Bendigo, and won both the 130 (119 m) and 220 yards (201 m) there. Over the next two years he had numerous victories at meetings in eastern Australia in spite of his rapidly increased handicap.

With his manager, E. R. ('Mick') Terry, Donaldson sailed for South Africa in 1909. A 'cocky youngster in those days', he was ready to challenge the world's best. Competing against Charles Holway of America and Arthur Postle of Australia at meetings organized by Rufe Naylor, Donaldson broke several world records, but failed to demonstrate that he was the world's fastest sprinter when he went on to England in 1910. He broke his return voyage to beat R. E. Walker, the 1908 Olympic winner, in a challenge for £100 over 100 yards (91 m) at Johannesburg. Back in Australia in 1911 he again ran in a series of well-promoted match races against Holway and Postle. In September a crowd of 6000 at the Sydney Sports Ground 'howled with delight' when Donaldson ended weeks of dispute by beating Holway over 130 yards (119 m). Returning to England in 1912 Donaldson confirmed his pre-eminence in professional running. At meetings usually held in the north of England, Wales and Scotland, he ran for appearance money, prizes and bets.

'With matches as scarce as hens' teeth and handicaps almost hopeless', Donaldson turned to track management. Although he argued that as an Australian he could not be conscripted, in 1916 he was charged with being an absentee from service and ordered to join the British Army. After seeing 'something of the real war game' with the 7th Manchesters at Arras Donaldson became a physical education instructor. He made a brief return to professional running in Britain before going to the United States of America in 1919. Declining chances to coach, Donaldson worked for Wanamakers, a New York retailer. He died by gassing himself in his apartment in the Bronx on 1 September 1933. In a note he said that a 'nervous disorder' had driven him to suicide. Survived by his wife Ethel, née Auer, and two daughters, he was buried in Galilee cemetery, Pennsylvania.

Only 5 ft 8 ins (173 cm) tall and 10 st. 4 lbs. (65 kg) in weight, but broad shouldered, Donaldson ran with a long, gliding stride and high arm action. His title, 'Blue Streak', derived from his well-known blue singlet marked with a large white 'A'. Among many world records, Donaldson's most enduring feats were 9.375 seconds for 100 yards (91 m) run in Johannesburg, 1910; and 12 seconds for 130 yards (119 m) run in Sydney, 1911. His 100 yard (91 m) time was not beaten by an amateur or a professional until 1948 and the 130 yard (119 m) record stood until 1951. The fact that his records survived into an era of better coaching, tracks and equipment (including starting blocks) is evidence of his exceptional talent. A drinking fountain in his memory was unveiled at Stawell in April 1939.
Select Bibliography

J. Pollard, The Ampol Book of Australian Sporting Records (Syd, 1968); K. Dunstan, Sports (Melb, 1973); Victorian Historical Magazine, 32 (1961), no 125, p 32; Argus (Melbourne), 15 Feb 1910, 13 Apr, 9 May, 25 Sept 1911, 14 Sept 1916; Bulletin, 28 Sept 1911; Sporting Globe, 13 Jan–17 Feb 1932; New York Times, 3 Sept 1933; Inglewood Advertiser, 8 Sept 1933; Canberra Times, 14 Mar 1970. More on the resources

Author: H. N. Nelson

Print Publication Details: H. N. Nelson, 'Donaldson, John (Jack) (1886 - 1933)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 8, Melbourne University Press, 1981, pp 318-319.

4200m/220yds contenders Empty John Donaldson, Jnr, (1886-1933) Sat Aug 07, 2010 1:09 pm



More information can be found at:

John Donaldson, Jnr, (1886-1933), better known as Jack, was a professional sprinter in the early part of the 1900's. He held various world sprinting records ranging from 100 yards to 400 yards, some of which stood for many years.

Early Life

Jack Donaldson was born in Raywood in Central Victoria on March 16, 1886. His father, Jack snr, led a somewhat nomadic life consisting of mining in Tarnagulla, farming in Raywood, and publican in Kerang, before finally moving to Inglewood as proprietor of the Pelican Hotel, when Jack jnr was still quite young.

Growing up in Inglewood, Jack, along with his brothers Don, Frank and Dick were prominent athletes and footballers. Lacking any professional training, Jack was easily able to beat all comers by the turn of the century.

Professional Career

In 1906, aged 20, Jack started as favourite in the Stawell Gift with a handicap of 11 yards, but was narrowly beaten by E W Thompson.

Jack was one of the rare professional athletes in the world at that time. With his stride of 8ft 4in and from his humble beginnings in Inglewood, he skyrocketed to world fame with 6 world records in distances from 100 yards to 400 yards. He travelled to London, New York and South Africa to compete in exhibition races. He was nicknamed the 'Blue Streak' due to his blue running singlet with a large white 'A'.

At Johannesburg, South Africa, on February 12, 1910, he estabished a world record of 9 3/8 seconds for the 100 yard dash. It was 38 years before American Mal Patton reduced that time.

Between his overseas tours Jack often returned to Inglewood to be with his family, and at Bendigo in 1911, he competed in a series of footraces against Arthur Postle of Queensland. Postle won the 75 yard dash, but Donaldson won the 130 yard, 220 yard and 440 yard races.

He created yet another world record in beating an American opponent (Charles Holway) at the Sydney Sports Ground on September 23, 1911, a record that stood until 1951. The covering of 130 yards in 12 seconds is generally regarded as Donaldson's most notable performance.

Post Professional Career

After retiring from sprinting, Jack operated a gymnasium in Inglewood. There are stories about his training methods on the local football ground where before crowds of cheering locals, he would race after the town's fastest greyhounds, catching them and returning them to their owners.

In 1919, Donaldson moved to New York where he operated a Gynasium. He died in New York in 1933, aged just 47.

World Records

Holding some 6 World Records during his career, Jack Donaldson's most enduring records were:

100 yards in 9.375s (Johannesburg, 1910) - stood until 1948.

130 yards in 12s (Sydney, 1911) - stood until 1951


'Back to Inglewood 2004', Howard Rochester

5200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Tue Aug 10, 2010 12:39 pm



FINAL 6 contenders

Steve Brimacombe (VIC) 1990's
Dean Capobianco (WA) 1990's
John Dinan (VIC) 1980's
Jack Donaldson (VIC) 1900's
Dave Irvine (NSW) 1960's
Len Sprague (VIC) 1940's

Three of the above were Australian open (amateur) national champions over 200m and represented Australia in the event at a major international meet. Two were Australian professional 220yds record holders and professional sprint champions and another was a five time national pro sprint champion who was unbeaten in pro titles over 220 yards.

REMEMBER once selected an athlete cannot be selected in another distance; on the other hand those that miss may be selected later on.

6200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Tue Aug 10, 2010 4:34 pm



No J DECOITE in the last 5 Question

Dinan maybe Question

7200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:40 am



200m/220yds Members of the
Pro Track
Team of the Century

Jack Donaldson (VIC) 1910's
David Irvine (NSW) 1970's

Thanks to IronMaiden much has already been written about Jack Donaldson. (see previous posts)

Last edited by youngy on Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:41 am; edited 1 time in total

8200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Wed Aug 11, 2010 9:41 am




Cappo ran 20.18 in Stuttgart in 1993.
Dinan ran 20.19 in Canberra in 1986.

9200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Tue May 08, 2012 4:38 pm



Have spent a lot of time recently reviewing this and I think before the Pro Team of the 20th century is finally locked in, we might need to change the line up.

Looking at Capobianco going to a 120m spot & bringing in another athlete to the 200m.

10200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Tue May 08, 2012 5:09 pm



20yo Capo 20.18sec (Stuttgart) in 1991 finished 5th in final behind winner Frankie Fredericks.

11200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Wed May 09, 2012 8:26 am



Thanks NBA Blues, that has previously been noted.

The dilemma is - the 120m is the prestige distance. The blue riband of professional running. The more I looked into the history of the sport througout the 20th century, there is no-one who rivals the records of Cappo & Brima at the 120m distance.

Therefore I think to do the 120m event justice given its position in professional footrunning the traditional gift distance should be a priority over the 200m.

I'm doing a lot of research at the moment as I want this project finished & locked in within the next six weeks or so.

I have a couple of high quality 200m specialists in mind, to choose from, to pair up with Jack Donaldson. Just need to gather a bit more info & write the profiles before going public with them.

12200m/220yds contenders Empty Re: 200m/220yds contenders Wed May 09, 2012 10:08 am



I agree Youngy, hard not to include Capo in the 120m as he is the only one to win the 'Grand Slam' in the space of 12 months!
It will take a huge effort for an athlete to do that again.

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