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Frequently Asked Questions
In the vast world of extreme sports, there exists a sub-culture at its heart best known as "digestive athletics." The most famous, glorified, respected, and celebrated of all the events of this underworld is the Beer Mile.
The foundation of any true beer mile is built upon two things: drinking beer and running a mile.
The most common format of the beer mile requires a single participant to drink a full-sized beer, run a quarter mile, then repeat the process three times. This results in the consumption of four beers and the running of four quarter miles (hence the beer mile). The entire process is timed. The total time is often used as a measuring stick of competency.
The truth is no one knows for sure. It's "invention" was not dissimilar to the invention of calculus, where it was rumored that Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz and Sir Isaac Newton developed the notion independent of each other in the late 17th century. Like calculus, the concept was not necessarily an invention, but more of a discovery. It was inevitable that beer miling would surface, and because of that, multiple parties can claim they were the first to dance with the demon known as the "chunder" mile.
The roots of the beer mile family tree can accurately be traced back to parts of Florida and New England college campuses in the U.S., Hash House Harrier events in Indonesia, and to many places (most notably Ontario) in Canada. The earliest documented races (whose records still exist today) occurred in the late 1980's and early 1990's. Legendary stories spread of a mysteriously brutal event but many details were lost in the telling of the stories. Rules were approximated and a race of more than 5 people at once was a rarity. With the emergence of the internet and instant digital communication, information was shared and rules became more consistent in the early 1990's.
The first known set of rules to be posted in a public place was by a group in Kingston, Ontario where beer-miling had taken place regulary for a few years. Since many beer milers elsewhere were competitive, they took it upon themselves to indoctrinate the Kingston rules into their own festivities. And so, the set known as the "Kingston Rules" was born.
Beermile.com has more than 17,709 entries and 1,692 races in its database. Not everyone enters race results into the site (only about 1 in 8 according to a recent rough survey).
Beermile.com has adopted the "Kingston Rules" (with a few slight changes) in the past few years. To qualify for a Beermile.com record list or a Beermile.com official time, these rules must be strictly followed:
Official Beermile.Com Rules
1. Each competitor drinks four cans of beer and runs four laps on a track (Start - beer/lap, beer/lap, beer/lap, beer/lap - finish). 2. Beer must be consumed before the lap is begun, within the transition area which is the 10 meter zone before the start/finish line on a 400m track. 3. The race begins with the drinking of the first beer in the last meter of the transition zone to ensure the comptitors run a complete mile (1609 meters). 4. Women also drink four beers in four laps (past rule lists only required ladies to drink three beers). 5. Competitors must drink canned beer and the cans should not be less than 355ml (the standard can volume) or 12oz (the imperial equivalent). Bottles may be substituted for cans as long as they are at least 12 oz (355 ml) in volume. 6. No specialized cans or bottles may be used that give an advantage by allowing the beer to pour at a faster rate. ie "super mega mouth cans" or "wide mouth bottles" are prohibited. 7. Beer cans must not be tampered with in any manner, ie. no shotgunning or puncturing of the can except for opening the can by the tab at the top. The same applies with bottles - no straws or other aids are allowed in order to aid in the speed of pouring. 8. Beer must be a minimum of 5% alcohol by volume. Hard ciders and lemonades will not suffice. The beer must be a fermented alcoholic beverage brewed from malt and flavored with hops. For an abbreviated list of valid beers and exceptions, click here. 9. Each beer can must not be opened until the competitor enters the transition zone on each lap. 10. Competitors who vomit before they finish the race must complete one penalty lap at the end of the race (immediately after the completion of their 4th lap). Note: Vomitting more than once during the race still requires only one penalty lap at the end.
They're not, and Beermile.com is not an authority. This site is just a centralized place to share beer mile thoughts and stories, and creating a consistent list makes competition more fun. Any variation of these rules is accepted, just not as "official" by Beermile.com. Most of these rules are widely accepted by beer miling communities and you will be hard-pressed to find severe deviation.
We are missing race results, obviously. Not everybody wants their race results on the internet, particularly athletes currently on scholarship or ex-athletes applying for non-beer-friendly jobs. We know people have run fast incognito. Our lists are not intended to be definitive; they're for entertainment. Along these lines, if you would like to have your name removed from our site, e-mail .
In most competitions, "Masters" participants are over 40. You're on this site, so you understand beermiling is not like most competitions. Unlike normal running, age is especially brutal and unforgiving on beermilers. We therefore classify various flavors of "Masters" as:
Masters - Age 30 and up
It's said that the record for the 4 pint "Chunder Mile" is close to 5 minutes, an impressive feat. However, drinking from a glass or cup has proven to be much much faster than from a can or bottle. Of course, there's a lot more alcohol, hops, and carbonation to consume. At the same time, most "Chunder" contests don't penalize vomiting. It's hard to compare these times to "Kingston" / North American times. Few argue that logistics should compete with sheer drinking ability, but the "Chunder Mile" format has not been as popular online as the the "Kingston" version.
For those that scoff at this site's standard rules, you can still share your stories here. Anybody is allowed to submit any event for public display. However, certain record lists will only contain times performed using the most popular rules. If another variation becomes more popular, it will definitely be celebrated appropriately.
Beermile.com will attempt to track down outstanding performances in:
Just register and click "Submit new race results". You have the ability to first create a race, then put in times and notes for each participant. You can come back and edit any race results you created. Note - if you edit a result that has already been approved as "official", it must be re-approved after the change.
A Beermile.com committee will approve the validity of the results (improvements to the process are being researched). Most times over 7 minutes will be considered official if there is ample documentation and/or race notes.
To be considered for an official sub-7 minute performance, you must submit video footage or something proving the validity of the race. Mostly, this is to provide entertainment for Beermile.com visitors, but it's also to prevent bogus results from contaminating record lists (any more than they already are). Proof will be added to an online gallery in the works.
Register a Beermile.com username, then e-mail to tell us what user you are. We can assign the race to you and give you rights to edit it.
Send ideas to . We're looking for a new Beermile.com logo, and all designers will be credited if their art is used. Also, feel free to e-mail us with any ideas and ways you want to contribute.
The first priority is filling the Beermile.com database with as many accurate records as possible. We'll then work on mailing lists, a Hall of Fame, and the ability to upload media for each race.
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