Beer mile

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Bierathlon participants in Harrislee

A beer mile is a 1-mile (1,609 m) drinking race combining running and speed drinking. Typically, the race takes place on a standard 400-metre or 1/4-mile running track. The race begins at the 1-mile starting line with the consumption of a 12-US-fluid-ounce (355 ml) beer, followed by a full lap around the track. The second lap continues in a similar manner; another 12-ounce beer is consumed before commencing the running of the second lap. This process is repeated for the next two laps. Following the completion of the fourth running lap (and four beers), a competitor has finished the race. More specific rules of the race vary by region. In North America, typically, 12 US ounces of beer is consumed from a can or bottle before every lap. A set of rules has been defined and published by[1]


James Nielsen[2] helped bring the beer mile into the public eye after becoming the first to break the five-minute barrier in 2014. Since then the record has been lowered a handful of times by runners from all over the world. To date, Nielsen is the only person to run under 5 minutes using cans, not bottles or pints (chunder mile).


In 2014, the inaugural Beer Mile World Championship was held in Austin, Texas. The men's race was won by Canadian Corey Gallagher with a time of 5:00.23.[3] In the women's race, American Beth Herndon set a new world record with a time of 6:17.8.[4]


On July 30, 2015, Australian Josh Harris (4:56.2) broke James Nielsen's world record. Harris became the second man to break the 5 minute barrier. The record lasted less than 12 hours. By the end of the day, Lewis Kent of Canada ran a 4:55.78.[5] On August 12, the last four world record holders competed against each other for the first time.[6] Canadian Jim Finlayson, another former world record holder, finished third overall, behind Kent and American Brian Anderson.

Canada won the men's Kingston Cup. Nielsen was disqualified for excessive spillage. Nielsen's disqualification was the deciding factor in the Canadian men's victory, turning the 10–11 American victory into a 10–11 Canadian win. The American women won the Queens cup, with Caitlin Judd, Chris Kimbrough and Lindsay Harper taking the top 3 spots.[7] The 2nd Annual FloTrack Beer Mile World Championship was held in Austin, Texas on December 1, 2015. Kent set a new world record with a time of 4:47.17 and Gallagher finished with a time of 4:48.62.[8]


On July 31, 2016, Canadian Corey Bellemore broke the world record in London with a time of 4:34.35.[9] Dale Clutterbuck finished second, breaking the European record with a time of 4:47:39 and Lewis Kent finished 4th in 5:11.[9] Canada won the men's team champion, and the North American women beat the European English team for the Queen's cup. The women's race was won by Erin O'Mara, with the British and European record going to Polly Keen of England.[10][11]


The third annual classic was held again in London in 2017, with the American men winning the first three positions to take home the Kingston Cup. All three American men were current or former American record holders, with Chris Robertson winning over Dale Clutterbuck. Garrett Cullen earned the silver, and Brandon Shirk earned the bronze for the second straight year. Bryony Pearce was the winner, after Allison Grace Morgan and Laura Riche were disqualified, making England the winner of the Queens Cup.

On October 28, 2017, Corey Bellemore broke his own record in San Francisco with a time of 4:33.6[12] The event had the largest crowd for a beer mile with an estimated attendance of 6200. Bellemore's performance likely would have been faster, but he had to move out to Lane 3 each lap due to soccer benches in the first 2 lanes [13]


Dale Clutterbuck was the official winner with a time of 4:50.[14][15] Three runners were disqualified, including last year's winner Corey Bellemore, after race officials measured the remaining liquid in the cans and bottles of the 20 competitors.[14] According to Patrick Butler of, four US fl oz (120 ml) is the maximum amount allowed left over.[14] Bellemore was disqualified for one-half US fl oz (15 ml) more than the permitted amount.[15][16]

Chunder Mile[edit]

In the United Kingdom, an imperial pint (568 mL) typically is consumed before every lap, with no specification of the drinking vessel but pint glasses are preferred for the speed in which the beverage can be finished. The one lap penalty for "chundering" (vomiting) is not generally enforced.

The current record is 4:57 by Dale Clutterbuck of England.[17] Clutterbuck is the only person to break 5 in the Chunder Mile, and is also the only person to go under 5 minutes for both the beer mile and Chunder Mile.[17] Five days after setting the chunder mile record, Clutterbuck was defeated by US Record Holder Chris Robertson at the 2017 classic. Clutterbuck withdrew from the race on the final lap.

Variations and other Countries[edit]

Next to the World Championship Beermile, in different countries the Beermile is getting more attention. In Belgium and Holland the Beermile is well known as an off-season race for triathlethes that are competing in the highest level in Holland. In the bigger cities people started Beermiling in the last few years.

Unofficial Dutch Records where set during the 043-Beermile (Maastricht)-

  • Edo van der Meer 2017–6:26
  • Robert de Korte 2018–6:12

Unofficial Belgian record is:

  • Tom Van Cappellen (33cl Bottles) 2019 - 5:11,6[1]
  • Lukas Bosmans (33cl Cans) 2017–5:18[2]

Some variations of the beer mile are

  • 4 × 40 oz. relay - In this event, a team of four competitors run 100 metres each around the track, finishing a 40 US fl oz (1,200 mL) bottle of beer or malt liquor on the way.
  • Wild Turkey 2-mile - Each competitor runs eight 400m laps, with a shot of whiskey (usually Wild Turkey) before every lap.
  • Naked 4 × 400 m - Each member of a four-competitor team runs a lap around the track nude – drinking is technically optional, but encouraged.
  • Beer 2 Mile - This event involves consuming four more beers for a total of eight beers and eight laps, vomiting only incurs one penalty lap.
  • Vodka 2 Mile - Competitors consume eight shots of vodka.
  • Chocolate Milk Mile - Instead of beer, competitors consume chocolate milk.[18]
  • Female Beer Mile – Like the standard beer mile except the first lap can be run without consuming a beer. This rule is often enacted to encourage female participation. Though in elite races like the Beer Mile World Classic and the FloTrack Beer Mile, women drink four beers. The four beer rule can be attributed to former World Record Holder Seanna Robinson's insistence that women run under the same rules.[19]

Defunct Race Series[edit]

Two national race series emerged and quickly folded, the Brew Mile[20] and the National Beer Mile.[21] By the end of 2016, neither race series was solvent,[22] with the National Beer Mile closing operations under dubious circumstances.[23]

In 2017, the Flotrack Beer Mile World Championships also ceased to exist.


Kastenlauf (short for "Bierkastenlauf", literally "beer crate running"), Kistenlauf, Bierlauf, Bierkastenrennen (literally crate-running, beer crate-running, or equivalents), Bier-Rallye, or Bierathlon, is a drinking sport in the German-speaking countries Austria, Germany and Switzerland. It is a race among teams that consist of two people carrying a crate of beer, all of which must be consumed prior to crossing the finish line. The route can be anywhere from 5 to 20 kilometres (3.1 to 12.4 mi) long.[24]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "The Complete Standard Beer Mile Ruleset". Beer Mile.
  2. ^ Official Beer Mile World Record: 4:57 by James Nielsen on YouTube
  3. ^ Mack, Gordon (December 4, 2014). "2014 Beer Mile World Championship - Men's Race (Gallagher wins in 5:00.23)". Flo Track. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ Mack, Gordon (December 4, 2015). "2014 Beer Mile World Championship - Women's Race (Herndon sets World Record 6:17.76)". Flo Track. Archived from the original on October 3, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Steele, Lauren (August 10, 2015). "Beer Mile World Record Broken Twice in Less Than 24 Hours". Men's Journal. Archived from the original on August 13, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^
  7. ^ Bachelor, Blane (August 24, 2015). "Canadian Men, American Women Dominate Beer Mile World Classic". Runner's World.
  8. ^ Huebsch, Tim (December 17, 2016). "Corey Bellemore dominates FloTrack Beer Mile World Championships". Running Magazine.
  9. ^ a b "2016 World Beer Mile Classic Fast Heat - Corey Bellemore World Record 4:34". Trackie TV.
  10. ^ "The Bad Boy Running Podcast: Ep29 - The Beer Mile vs The Great British Beerathon". Retrieved April 25, 2017.
  11. ^ Bachelor, Blane (August 1, 2016). "New Beer Mile World Record set in London". Runner's World.
  12. ^ Corey Bellemore sets new Beer Mile World Record: 4:33.6 on YouTube
  13. ^ Taekema, Dan (November 4, 2014). "This Windsor runner can chug beer and complete a mile faster than anyone else in the world". CBC News.
  14. ^ a b c Meschke, Jacob (August 13, 2018). "Corey Bellemore Finishes Beer Mile First—Then Gets DQ'ed for Not Drinking Enough". Runner's World.
  15. ^ a b Bruner, Raisa (August 20, 2018). "Record-Setting Runner Disqualified for Not Drinking Enough Beer". Time Magazine. Archived from the original on August 21, 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ Rense, Sarah (August 22, 2018). "This Year's Beer Mile World Record Holder Was Disqualified for Not Drinking Enough Beer". Esquire. Archived from the original on August 23, 2018. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^ a b New Chunder Mile World Record - 4:57 on YouTube
  18. ^ Novey, Beth (May 6, 2014). "On Your Mark, Get Set, No! A List Of Inadvisable Ways To Run A Mile". NPR.
  19. ^ Radley, Scott (December 3, 2014). "Raise a glass, no a can, for Seanna". The Hamilton Spectator.
  20. ^ Cigelske, Tim. "Brew Mile starts race series". Draft Mag.
  21. ^ "National Beer Mile Releases 2016 Event Dates". Mason Jar Media. January 21, 2016.
  22. ^ "Beer Fit". Crunchbase.
  23. ^ Callaway, Jackie (January 19, 2017). "Beer run event canceled without notice, would be runners want to know what happened to refunds". ABC Action News (WFTS, Tampa Bay.
  24. ^ Harding, Ingo (August 5, 2013). "Polizei statt Spaß zum Vatertag am Schlachtensee?". Der Tagesspiegel (in German).

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