About Maccabi Athletics

The Maccabi Athletic Club is the only Jewish Track and Field competing club outside of Israel.

The Beginnings

The first Jewish interstate competition in track and field took place in 1925 when teams from Melbourne and Sydney competed against each other in Sydney. Five male athletes Maurice Bardas, Sonny Bennett, Phil Lewis, Eric Simmons and Bill Stafford represented Melbourne in that event.

This was the humble beginnings of what is now Maccabi Athletic Club.

The First Club

Athletics continued to be a part of the annual Maccabi Carnival. In 1933 Mr Louis Goldberg sent out a circular to all Jewish athletes and various existing athletic clubs proposing to start a Jewish Athletic Club for the purpose of interstate Carnival competition. On the 6th July 1933 the club was formed. It soon had 20 registered male members who competed in the 1933-34 Sydney Carnival.

The first Jewish Victorian Track and Field Championships was organised in 1959 and continued annually for many years.

A New Era

In August 1961 the Ajax Amateur Athletic Club was registered with the Victorian Amateur Athletic Association to become the first competing Jewish athletic club in Australia and by October 1961 the Ajax women’s team were competing in the Victorian women’s competition.

Through the years the club has changed its name from AJAX to Hakoah Ajax to Ajax- Maccabi and is now known as Maccabi Athletic Club.

The club still competes in State competition catering for all age groups from 10 years old and upwards.

Club membership peaked in the early 1970s when it had over 240 members including a huge contingent of Little Athletics competitors in a weekly summer competition organised by Noel Levine.


Over the years the club won numerous pennants in both track and field and cross country competition. Many of our members have represented the club not only at Senior and Junior Carnivals but also at state, national and International level.

A number of club athletes have won medals at the Maccabiah Games and in 2015 club athlete Jemima Montag was captain of the Australian Youth Team which competed in the IAAF World Youth Championships in Columbia.

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