British 6 Day Race Record

James Zarei

James Zarei at the 2013 British Ultra Fest Photo by Wendy Edwards

The current British 6 Day Race Record is held by George Littlewood (1859–1912) who ran 623 miles 1,320 yards at Madison Square Gardens in New York. The race took place in 1888 between 26 November and 1 December – a 125 years ago.

Littlewood also holds the 6 day walking record of  531 miles set in Sheffield on 11 March 1882.

The record was threatened in 1990 by James Zarei who came within a mile of breaking the record at Gateshead 6 day race only to be thwarted by a football match that held the race up for two and a half hours.

Brtish multiday specialist William Sichel set a new World Age-Group record for the over 55’s at 6 Days running 829.972kms/515.720 miles at the British Ultra Fest at Radley College August 2013.


James Zarei – Winner Of The Last GB 6 Day Race

British Ultra Fest

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Six Days In The Dome 2014

Posted on the Ultralist:

Date: Tue, 27 Aug 2013 19:25:27 -0400
From: joe fejes
Subject: Six Days in the Dome

Registration is now open on Ultrasignup for the 24/48/6 day indoor 400 Meter track event to be held at the Alaska Dome next August 4th. Thanks to Christian Griffith for setting up the website. More information is forthcoming but I wanted to get it up ASAP to give runners plenty of time to make plans. Should be a neat experience.


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The French Ultra Festival – 6 Day Race News – August 2012

french ultra festivalSome details have been posted on the French Ultra Festival website concerning the new venue for the 2013 event. Beautiful images on the site show Luc en Provence as the place to be 7th of May 2013 and already there are 118 riders signed up for this classic race. Continue reading

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New 6 Day Race In Hollywood, Florida?

K-G Nystrom has posted on Facebook that there may be a new 6 day race in Hollywood, Florida in 2013. It looks like it will be in the middle of March and K-G says the website will be ready in about a month.

As he says, it is very close to Athens and only a month away from New York that will make it an either or event for most people. One good thing is that the weather will be a lot warmer than New York with temperatures averaging 26-27 degrees in March.

K-G has also created a group on Facebook –

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Brief History Of 6 Day Races

dipali cunningham
Dipali Cunningham

A brief history of 6 day races from Wikipedia begins in 1867 when Edward Payson Weston walked from Portland, Maine to Chicago, Illinois in 25 days, a distance of 2,134 km (1,326 mi), earning him $10,000 and national fame. In 1874 Weston walked his first six-day race and was challenged by Daniel O’Leary, who completed 500 miles (800 km) in 153 hours. The big battle took place in Chicago in November 1875 with O’Leary emerging victorious with 503 miles (810 km) and Weston finished with 451 miles (726 km).

In a re-match in 1877 O’Leary was victorious again and the excitement created enough interest for Sir John Dugdale Astley, a British Member of Parliament, to inaugurate a series of 6 day races to determine the “Long distance Champion of The World”. These became known as the “Astley Belt” races and cash prizes were offered. O’Leary won the first two and was thwarted by Charles Rowell in his quest for three in a row. Weston won the fourth, setting a record of 550 miles (890 km) and Rowell won the final three multiday races to permanently keep the Astley Belt.

The first women’s six-day race took place in 1879 and was won by Bertha Von Berg with 372 miles (599 km). In 1880, Fred Hitchborn set a new record of 565 miles (909 km) earning $17,000 dollars, a fortune at the time. By the early 1890s the six-day races were in decline and no longer drawing the public or offering large prizes. It wasn’t until Don Choi hosted a 6 Day race in 1980 in California that interest began to grow again.

Briton Mike Newton became the first man to cover 500 miles/800km in a modern 6 day race at Nottingham in November 1981. In 1982, Tom O’Reilly took the six-day total to 576 miles/927km. In 1984 Yiannis Kouros twice ran over 1,022 km (635 mi) setting a new world record that would stand until 2005 when he broke his own record again with 1,036 km (644 mi) at the Cliff Young Australian 6-day race in Colac, Australia.

The last 6 day race that took place in the UK was 13 /19 October 1990 when James Zarei of the UK  won the Gateshead 6 Day with  1001.505 km

The women’s world record was broken by Australia’s Dipali Cunningham in 1998 when she covered 504 miles (811 km) at the Sri Chinmoy six-day race on Wards Island in New York in very wet conditions. In 2001 Cunningham set a new Women’s road best of 510 miles (820 km). In 2009 Dipali reset her own record on the road for six days with 513 miles.





The History of the 6 day race Andy Milroy

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