Born Auckland 1926, died 9 June 1990. Olympian 55.
John ‘Dutch’ Holland first represented New Zealand in the 400m hurdles at the 1948 London Olympic Games. He won his heat and finished sixth in the semi-final.
Two years later he competed at the 1950 Auckland British Empire Games at Eden Park where he took the silver medal in the 440 yards hurdles and teamed up with Dave Batten, Jack Sutherland and Derek Steward to win the bronze medal in the 4 x 440 yards relay.
Holland developed into a world class hurdler and in 1952 he was selected to compete at his second Olympic Games in Helsinki. At that time he was only the second New Zealander, after Jack Lovelock, to compete at two Olympics.
A towering athlete with the spring of a high jumper Holland was superb in Helsinki winning his heat and quarter-final before coming second in the semi-final. In the final he ran 52.26s to claim the bronze medal. He was consistent over the two days of racing with the final ...