Yiannis Kouros

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Yiannis Kouros
Yiannis Kouros 2008 Keszthely Hungary 2008.jpg
Yiannis Kouros in 2008
Personal information
Born (1956-02-13) 13 February 1956 (age 64)
Tripoli, Greece
SportTrack and Field
Event(s)24-hour run, 48-hour run, 6-day race
Achievements and titles
Personal best(s)Marathon: 2:24:00
Spartathlon: 20:25:00 WR

Yiannis Kouros (Greek: Γιάννης Κούρος; born 13 February 1956 in Tripoli, Greece) is a Greek ultramarathon runner based in Greece. He is sometimes called the "Running God" or "Pheidippides' Successor". He holds many men's outdoor road world records from 100 to 1,000 miles and many road and track records from 12 hours to 6 days.[1][2] In 1991, he starred as Pheidippides in the movie The Story of the Marathon: A Hero's Journey, which chronicles the history of marathon running.

Kouros came to prominence when he won the Spartathlon in 1984 in record time[3] and the Sydney to Melbourne Ultramarathon in 1985 in a record time of 5 days, 5 hours, 7 minutes and 6 seconds. He beat the previous record held by Cliff Young.[4] Kouros held Australian citizenship for part of his running career and was inducted into the Australian Ultra Runners Association’s Hall of Fame in 2019.[5]

Kouros says that his secret is that "when other people get tired, they stop. I don't. I take over my body with my mind. I tell it that it's not tired and it listens."

Kouros has also written over 1,000 poems, several of which appear in his books Symblegmata (Clusters) and The Six-Day Run of the Century.

World records[edit]

According to the International Association of Ultrarunners, as of February 2013.


100 miles Road 11h 46min 37s 13.665 km/h (8.491 mph)
1,000 km Track 5d 16h 17min 00s 7.338 km/h (4.560 mph)
1,000 km Road 5d 20h 13min 40s 7.131 km/h (4.431 mph)
1,000 miles Road 10d 10h 30min 36s 6.424 km/h (3.992 mph)

Time races[edit]

12 h Road 162.543 km (101.000 mi) 13.545 km/h (8.416 mph)
24 h Road 290.221 km (180.335 mi) 12.093 km/h (7.514 mph)
24 h Track 303.506 km (188.590 mi) 12.646 km/h (7.858 mph)
48 h Road 433.095 km (269.113 mi) 9.023 km/h (5.607 mph)
48 h Track 473.495 km (294.216 mi) 9.875 km/h (6.136 mph)
6 days Road 1,028.370 km (638.999 mi) 7.142 km/h (4.438 mph)
6 days Track 1,038.851 km (645.512 mi) 7.214 km/h (4.483 mph)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "World Best Performances" (PDF). International Association of Ultrarunners. October 2012.
  2. ^ "IAU World (age) best performances" (PDF). 29 January 2015. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
  3. ^ "Japan's Ryoichi Sekiya wins Spartathlon race". USA Today. AP. 26 September 2009. Retrieved 15 February 2010.
  4. ^ Potter, David (18 April 1985) Melbourne's Greeks welcome their Marathon man, The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 15 February 2010.
  5. ^ Kouros inducted into Australian ultra running hall of fame

External links[edit]