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Jim McNamara

Full name: James "Jim" McNamara
Nickname(s): Gentleman Jim, Jim Mac
Gender: Male
Height: 5-10.5 (180 cm)
Weight: 141 lbs (64 kg)
Born: April 17, 1939 in London, Greater London, Great Britain
Died: March 9, 2016 in Cabra, Dublin, Ireland
Affiliations: Donore Harriers, Dublin (IRL)
Country: IRL Ireland
Sport: Athletics


Jim McNamara was born in London and was a young child when his parents moved to Broombridge Road, Cabra in Dublin. His father's family were natives of Limerick. Jim McNamara joined Donore Harriers in January 1963 and made his mark, first as a senior athlete then as a master and finally as a coach. On the track he won eight national titles; 3 miles (1964-65, 1967), 6 miles (1965-66), 10 miles (1965-66) and 3,000 m steeplechase (1964).

He also won the Irish marathon title three times (1964-66) and was nine times on the winning Donore Harriers team in the national cross-country championships. The pinnacle of his senior career came in 1976 when he qualified for the Olympic Games when finishing second to Danny McDaid in 2-14.57 at Limerick.

Known to his many friends in athletics as “Jim Mac,” McNamara represented Ireland at the Budapest European Games in 1966, where Jim Hogan, a Limerick man running for Britain, won the marathon ahead of him. McNamara also represented Ireland in four World Cross-Country Championships. At masters level, he came into his own, winning 11 gold, 5 silver and 4 bronze medals at European and World Masters Championships at the 1500m, 5000m and 10,000m distances as well as one 10,000m cross-country medal. In 1984 he ran a world age-45 record of 14:47.8 for 5000 metres. In 2013 McNamara was awarded the IAAF Jubilee Gold Medal medal for his services to the sport he loved so much.

Personal Best: Marathon – 2-14:44 (1974).


Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1976 Summer 37 Montréal Athletics Men's Marathon Ireland IRL 39

Men's Marathon

Games Age City Sport Country Phase Unit Rank T
1976 Summer 37 Montréal Athletics Ireland Final Standings 39 2-24:57.2
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