1912 – 1994
Jack Metcalfe arrived at Berlin 1936 as the reigning word record holder in the triple jump, then known as the hop step and jump, with a leap in December 1935 of 15.78 metres.
At the Olympics he finished third behind two Japanese, Naoto Tajima and Masao Harada. The winning leap of 16.00 metres by Tajima established a world record that was not bettered until 1951. Metcalfe’s medal was the only one garnered by Australians at Berlin, making those Olympic Games the second worst, in terms of medals won, behind the medal-barren St Louis 1904.
At Berlin, Metcalfe also competed in the high jump, where he finished twelfth. At the 1934 London and 1938 Sydney Empire Games, Metcalfe won two gold medals in the triple jump and bronze medals in the long jump (1934) and javelin (1938) as well competing in the high jump.
World War II ended Metcalfe’s Olympic career as a competitor but at London 1948, he was the athletics section manager.
Metcalfe was born in Bellingen, New South Wales and was educated at Sydney Boys High School and Sydney University. He eventually had his own law firm and was self coached throughout his career.