Ralph Doubell

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Ralph Doubell
Personal information
Born 11 February 1945 (1945-02-11) (age 73)
Melbourne, Australia
Alma mater University of Melbourne
Height 1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 65 kg (143 lb)
Sport Middle-distance running
Club University of Melbourne
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s) 1:44.40 (800 m, 1968)[1]

Ralph Douglas Doubell AM (born 11 February 1945) is an Australian former athlete, and gold medallist at the 1968 Summer Olympics. He is also a member of the Sport Australia Hall of Fame and a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia.

Athletic career[edit]

Doubell was born in Melbourne, was educated at Melbourne High School[2] and graduated from the University of Melbourne, where he had come under the tutelage of Austrian-born coach Franz Stampfl.[3]

Doubell's first major international victory in 800 metres was at the World Student Games in Tokyo in 1967 in a time of 1:46.7. His next season (the Olympic season) was severely curtailed by Achilles' tendon injuries, and he was unable to compete for six months prior to the Olympic Games in Mexico City.[1] Doubell, however, was able to recover in time for Mexico City and won the 800 m gold medal, passing the pre-race favourite Wilson Kiprugut of Kenya down the straight to win in a world record equalling time of 1:44.3.[1]

Doubell also won the 800 metres gold medal at the 1969 Pacific Conference Games in a time of 1:48.0.[4]

Doubell had planned to compete at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, but was prevented in doing so by calf injuries, which brought on his retirement from competitive athletics.[2]

Post-athletic career[edit]

After retirement from sports, Doubell enrolled at Harvard Business School. He then worked as a Head of Relationship Management and a Director and Divisional Head of Corporate and Institutional Banking of the Deutsche Bank Group in Australia. He was a Director of Telstra Stadium in Sydney until 2007.[1]

Doubell was inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1985.[2] On 12 June 2006, in the Queen's Birthday Honours List, he was made a Member (AM) of the Order of Australia, for "services to athletics through administrative roles, particularly with Athletics New South Wales, and as a competitor".[5]


Preceded by
New Zealand Peter Snell
Men's 800 metres World Record Holder
equalled by Dave Wottle (USA) on 1972-07-01

1968-10-15 – 1973-06-27
Succeeded by
Italy Marcello Fiasconaro