At the 1954 Vancouver Commonwealth Games he reached the stadium in first place, 17 minutes ahead of the next runner, but collapsed repeatedly and failed to finish. After covering just 200 metres in 11 minutes, he was stretchered away and never raced again. "I was lucky not to have died that day", he later said. His Games kit, including plimsolls and the special medal which following the games the Duke of Edinburgh sent to Jim inscribed "To a most gallant marathon runner." were given to The Sports Hall of Fame, Vancouver in 1967 for exhibition.
He served as president of the then recently formed Road Runners Club from 1955 - 1956.