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Historical past and Evolution of the 24-Hour World Information – iRunFar

Historical past and Evolution of the 24-Hour World Information – iRunFar


With the 2023 IAU 24-Hour World Championships simply days away, beginning this Friday, December 1, in Taipei, we’re trying again on the 140-plus-year historical past of the 24-hour world document and its development to this weekend’s beginning line. The present 24-hour world document holders, Alexander Sorokin and Camille Herron, are planning to race, and we’ll be searching for challenges from them and others to the present document marks.

Ultrarunning has its roots in what’s known as pedestrianism, the game of overlaying very lengthy distances over lengthy intervals of time by strolling and working, which emerged the late seventeenth century in England. Amongst their many occasions, the pedestrians took half in staged indoor six-day races, mixing strolling and working to cowl huge distances.

The primary credible recorded 24-hour end was by one of many nice pedestrians of the late nineteenth century, Charles Rowell, at one such occasion. Rowell is credited with overlaying over 530 miles in a single such six-day race. In a six-day race in 1882, he’s credited with overlaying 150 miles within the first 24 hours of the occasion — the primary time 150 miles (241 kilometers) was damaged.

It will be nearly 100 extra years earlier than we’d have a ratifiable girls’s document. Though there have been anecdotal studies of a feminine runner finishing 106 miles in a 24-hour occasion within the distant previous, the primary recorded distance on the DUV Extremely Marathon Statistics web site is by the American Marcy Schwam. She ran in the 1979 David Copperfield 48-Hour Observe Ultramarathon in Woodside, California, and recorded 113.671 miles (182.937 kilometers). This appears to be the primary recorded and ratified feminine 24-hour world document of recent occasions.

Within the years that adopted, each data have been steadily improved upon as new generations of athletes push the boundaries of what’s potential. Within the stability of this text, we’ll dive deep into the development of the 24-hour world document from these beginning factors.

Marcy Schwam

Marcy Schwam, who set the primary recorded girls’s 24-hour document in 1979. Photograph: Sri Chinmoy Marathon Group

The Historical past and Evolution of the Males’s 24-Hour World Report

Fifty Years Later

We have now to go ahead to 1931, when the legendary Arthur Newton of England achieved a distance of 152.306 miles (245.113k). The five-time Comrades Marathon winner ran that on an indoor observe in Ontario, Canada.

Wally Haywood, 1953 

Quick ahead one other 20 years to 1953, and Newton was instrumental with the U.Okay. Roadrunners Membership in staging a 24-hour race on the Motspur Park cinder observe in Surrey, England. South African Wally Hayward, one other multiple-time Comrades Marathon winner, turned the primary runner to interrupt the 250k barrier, working 159.319 miles (256.4k).

Wally Hayward with Arthur Newton - RRC 24-hour

Wally Hayward (left) with Arthur Newton on the Roadrunners Membership 24-hour race in November 1953. Photograph: U.Okay. Roadrunners Membership

Ron Bentley, 1973

The U.Okay. Roadrunners Membership organized a number of 100-mile and 24-hour observe races all through this time. In 1973, Ron Bentley from the well-known Tipton Harriers membership ran 161.309 miles (259.603k), simply lacking 260k, however going via the imperial 160-mile mark for the primary time. Like Hayward’s document, this was run on a cinder observe at Walton-on-Thames, England.

Park Barner, 1979

By the late Seventies and early Eighties,  a resurgence of 100-mile and 24-hour races came about. The U.Okay. nonetheless had annual occasions, however now these had been being replicated in Europe and the U.S. Beforehand, the document had been damaged with lengthy gaps of typically 20 years between them. Over the following three years, the document would fall on 5 events.

The US was the venue for the following enchancment in 1979. American Park Barner was one of the vital distinguished American ultrarunners of the time and, like a lot of the earlier record-breakers, simply liked working. Their refreshing perspective is greatest summed up in Barner’s remark in a single interview: “I nonetheless don’t really feel like I’m primary. I really feel the identical means I did once I began working severely in 1968. I attempt to not let something have an effect on me. I don’t want trophies or wine or something. It’s one thing I take pleasure in doing. It makes me really feel good. I really feel like a child.”

Barner ran 162.304 miles (261.204k), growing the document by a mile.

The French Connection and A Report-Breaking Brit

It was again to Europe, and an rising French ultrarunner, Jean-Gilles Boussiquet, improved the document twice within the house of eight months. Blackburn within the north of England was the venue for an occasion in October 1980, the place the Frenchman pushed the document out to 164.109 miles (264.108k).

Clearly attending to grips with the pains of the occasion, the next Could, in 1981, he took up the problem once more. In an occasion in Lausanne, Switzerland, he added an additional 8k (5 miles) to turn out to be the primary runner break the 270k barrier. He completed with 169.400 miles (272.624k).

Now, these 24-hour races had been spreading. Within the west of England, the native Gloucester Athletic Membership had a bunch of very competent ultrarunners. Using the wave, they organized an occasion at their native observe in 1982. A number of of them took half. Englishman Martin Daykin, one of many high European 100k runners of the time, was the favourite. However it was his compatriot Dave Dowdle who prevailed and broke 170 miles for the primary time, recording 170.553 miles (274.480k), a distance which till not too long ago was the British document.

Dowdle’s world document glory was solely to final till the autumn that yr, when the document returned to France. In November 1982, Bernard Gaudin broke it by a whisker, including an additional 143 meters to complete with 170.699 miles (274.715k).

Dave Dowdle - 1982 Gloucester 24-Hour

Dave Dowdle (proper) towards the tip of the 1982 Gloucester 24 Hour race. Photograph: Gloucester Athletic Membership

The Yiannis Kouros Period

In 1983, an unknown Greek runner, Yiannis Kouros, astounded the extremely world by emphatically successful the well-known Spartathlon race. A feat he repeated the next yr, 1984, when overlaying the 245k course in a document 20 hours and 25 minutes. The course in Greece consists of mountainous sections, and temperatures could be heat. Hypothesis began amongst ultramarines on what Kouros may obtain in a flat 24-hour race.

They didn’t have to attend lengthy. Simply eight weeks later, in November 1984, he was on the beginning line in New York, U.S., for the Sri Chinmoy 24-Hour Race. The remainder is extremely historical past. He improved the prevailing document by over 10k, taking it to 176.999 miles (284.583k).

Over the following few years, he would go on to document 14 of the perfect males’s 24-hour occasions ever and break the world document on an additional 4 events, pushing it as much as the primary 300k effort with 188.589 miles (303.506k) in 1997.

Kouros had made the 24-hour distance his personal, and plenty of felt the 303k would final for a few years. Over the following 20 years, solely a few runners would document over 280k, however nobody neared 300k.

Yiannis Kouros - 1998 Sri Chinmoy Marathon Team 24-hour race in Basel, Germany

Yiannis Kouros on the rostrum on the 1998 Self Transcendence 24-Hour Race in Basel, Switzerland. Photograph: Sri Chinmoy Marathon Group

Alongside Comes Alexander Sorokin

From 2015, when he ran his first 24-hour occasion in Turin, Italy, and recorded 150.489 miles (242.189k), Alexander Sorokin elevated his private document incrementally till recording 173.345 miles (278.972k) in successful the 2019 IAU 24-Hour World Championships in Albi, France.

Two years later, in August 2021, he took half within the UltraPark Weekend 24 Hour race in Pabianice, Poland. He improved his personal private greatest by an enormous 30k (18 miles), to take Kouros’s males’s 24-hour world document. He improved it by 6k to document 192.251 miles (309.399k). It was an enormous leap, not solely on his personal development, but in addition comfortably surpassing Kouros’s mark.

Not content material to take a seat on his laurels, one other yr later on the 2022 IAU 24-Hour European Championships, he elevated this by an additional 10k to 198.598 miles (319.614k), narrowly lacking the 200-mile barrier.

As talked about, Sorokin will race this weekend’s 2023 IAU 24-Hour World Championships, so we’ll see if that elusive 200-mile barrier is approached.

Aleksandr Sorokin - 2021 UltraPark Weekend 24 Hour - 24 hour world record

Aleksandr Sorokin units a 24-hour world document on the 2021 UltraPark Weekend 24 Hour. Photograph: UltraPark Weekend 24 Hour

The Historical past and Evolution of the Ladies’s 24-Hour World Report

The Battle of the Brits 

Quick ahead three years from Marcy Schwam’s 1979 24-hour world document run, and the British took over for some time. In 1982 — on the identical race at Gloucester, England, the place Dave Dowdle set the then males’s 24-hour world document — Britain’s Lynn Fitzgerald set a girls’s 24-hour world document and pushed it up over 200k to 133.533 miles (214.902k).

Three years later, in 1985, the legend that’s the extremely pioneer and a number of world document breaker Eleanor Adams-Robinson made one other breakthrough. After exhibiting promise in two earlier 24-hour races, she beat Fitzgerald’s distance with 138.441 miles (222.800k). That race was held at Nottingham, England, and was the beginning of a four-year relationship the place she and Hilary Walker, the opposite nice English extremely pioneer, traded the 24-hour world document on 5 events. On the finish of this battle, at a race in Australia in 1989, Adams-Robinson pushed the document up her third and last time to 149.234 miles (240.169k).

Adams-Robinson and Walker had each spoken of wishing to be the primary woman to run over 150 miles in 24 hours. Adams-Robinson bought shut on this event, however was round three laps of a 400-meter observe quick. Ultimately, neither of them made that breakthrough.

Eleanor Robinson and Hilary Walker - 1997 European 100k Championships

Eleanor Robinson (left) and Hilary Walker on Group Nice Britain on the 1997 IAU 100k European Championships. Photograph: Worldwide Affiliation of Ultrarunners

The 150-Mile Breakthrough

The German runner Sigrid Lomsky, at 50 years younger, broke that 150-mile mark by recording 151.401 miles (243.657k).

This mark stood for 3 years earlier than it was damaged by the younger Russian Elena Sidorenkova, who ran 154.659 miles (248.901k). That distance wouldn’t be surpassed for over 13 years.

Japanese Masterclass

The Japanese had for a very long time been very competent 100k runners. They had been now turning their consideration to 24 hours.

In 2009, Mami Kudo cracked the 250k barrier, recording 158.092 miles (254.425k) at a race in Taipei. Two years later, on the identical race, she was to push it out much more, including a couple of kilometer to document 158.637 miles (255.303k). She was now 47 years previous.

A Polish Double in 2017

Kudo’s document stood for nearly six years, till 2017, which must be considered the yr of the Polish double. This was the yr that Patrycja Bereznowska, of Poland, broke the 24-hour world document twice in 12 weeks.

Patrycja Bereznowska - 2022 UltraPark Weeked 48 Hour race - 48 hour world record - 1

Patrycja Bereznowska, extra not too long ago, on her approach to setting a 48-hour world document on the 2022 UltraPark Weekend 48 Hour race in Poland. Photograph: Marek Janiak/UltraPark Weekend

Firstly, in April 2017, she ran 159.223 miles (256.246k), surpassing Kudo’s mark by a couple of kilometer. The 160-mile barrier approached, however few, besides maybe Bereznowska herself, thought that it might occur so quickly. Simply 12 weeks later, in July 2017, she competed on the IAU 24-Hour World Championships occasion in Belfast, Northern Eire.

The occasion is greatest remembered for the ability failing and plunging the entire race into darkness, as assist crews hurried to search out head torches within the pitch darkness whereas hoping the chip timing system was nonetheless recording, with its built-in backup batteries, as most runners weren’t going to cease. Energy was duly restored, and so was the reside timing, to the aid of everybody.

After holding off the early tempo of different runners, Berezknowska maintained her personal regular progress to complete strongly within the last hours, working simply over 4k additional with 161.550 miles (259.991k). She set a brand new landmark for girls, working over 160 miles in 24 hours.

Right here Comes Camille Herron

It didn’t take lengthy earlier than the U.S.’s Camille Herron determined to have an actual crack on the 24-hour occasion. The a number of document holder at most distances from 50 miles to 100 miles ran 162.918 miles (262.192k) on the observe, in Phoenix Arizona, in December 2018.

Camille Herron on her approach to setting a brand new 24-hour world document on the 2018 Desert Solstice Observe Invitational. Photograph: Aravaipa Working/Howie Stern

She definitely wasn’t delay by the expertise, as slightly below a yr later — on October 27, 2019 — she went even additional on the IAU 24-Hour World Championships at Albi, France. This time on a street loop, she elevated the space by nearly 5 miles to 167.842 miles (270.116k).

This mark has held agency for 4 years. Herron, like Aleksandr Sorokin, is entered for this weekend’s 2023 IAU 24-hour Championships in Taipei. Time will inform if both document will likely be threatened within the warmth and humidity of that area.

The 24-Hour World Report Development Chart

Name for Feedback

  • What are your predictions for this coming weekend’s 2023 IAU 24-Hour World Championships?
  • Do you assume both of the world data will fall?



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