Jack Lovelock – Athlete and Doctor
By Dr Graeme Woodfield
Jack Lovelock remains one of New Zealand’s greatest sportsmen, the diminutive figure in black who, “running in a rapture”, won the Olympic 1500m gold medal in world record time in front of Hitler in 1936.
Despite his fame, Lovelock has been an enigmatic, elusive figure. This prompted fellow Timaru Boys’ High School old boy Dr Graeme Woodfield to embark on a comprehensive study of Lovelock.
Woodfield has examined the many facets of Lovelock – athlete, doctor, journalist, soldier, family man – and, drawing on the contributions of several specialists, completed what is virtually a forensic investigation of this famous New Zealander.
Besides dealing with Lovelock’s brilliant running and under-rated medical, military and journalistic contributions, Woodfield has written of the accidents that affected his life after 1940 and has dealt thoroughly with the theory that he committed suicide. He now offers the most comprehensive and readable account of this New Zealand icon’s life.