DOB: 11 November 1890
Died: 16 May 1970
From: Hawthorn College/Melbourne University/University
Number: 10 (1915, 1920-1921)
Games: 17 (98 total)
Goals: 2 (23 total)
Originally from Horsham, Brake was a talented schoolboy athlete who starred in athletics, football and rifle-shooting. At one point he held the Australasian pole vault record, and as a ruckman became one of the University club's few superstars during their brief stay in the VFL. He had previously trialled at Melbourne in the 1909 pre-season.
During his time with the Students he represented Victoria in 1912 and despite briefly retiring in the middle of the 1913 season to open a business in Hamilton, played as a ruckman with University until they folded at the end of 1914. Brake transferred to the Fuschias for 1915, but disappointed in comparison to his performances with University. Nevertheless he helped Melbourne to the finals but then the First World War interrupted and when Melbourne went into recess his career was put on hold.
In November 1915 he enlisted in the Australian Infantry Force and served on the Western Front as part of the 8th Field Artillery Brigade from April 1916 to January 1917. In 1916 he played in a match for servicemen in London in front of the Prince of Wales, King Manuel of Portugal and 3,000 other onlookers. That year he rose to the rank of Lieutenant.
After the First World War ended Brake returned to Melbourne and played six games across 1920 and 1921 before retiring. In his final years he spent most of his time working on his farm at Yering and wasn't able to train, appearing to play matches only.
Brake served again in World War II despite being nearly 50 when the conflict began. At the time of rejoining the military Brake was a member of the Independant Tribunal which oversaw hearings against reported players. He remained on the tribunal through at least 1957.
As part of his day job he was a well known agriculturalist and president of the Australian Institute of Agricultural Science.
In 1909 he was listed as from Hawthorn, not Hawthorn College.