27 Aug

The 5 Minute Beer Mile

Nick Symmonds

Since 1985, the Marathon du Médoc has prided itself on combining the pursuits of running and wine-drinking with participants encouraged to sample the delights of numerous vineyards across the region. With many of the en-route stations offering foie gras and oysters, there is certainly a sophisticated feel to the inebriated run.

This week saw Olympic star Nick Symmonds combine the two in a slightly different manner, with the sprinter attempting a world record in the beer mile. The rules require the runner to drink a beer before setting off, and then to consume three more at quarter-mile intervals.

The American athlete, however, was unable to set a new record as he finished the mile in 5:19, which is 10 seconds slower than current record holder Jim Finlayson. The 800m sprinter commented after his attempt: "I feel tired, I feel full of beer. I'm not inebriated by any means yet. But, 5.19... It's a good first mark, I've got some training to do."

Symmonds' attempt is perhaps not the ideal example of the Olympic stars inspiring a generation, nor does it pertain to the refinement of the Marathon du Médoc. If anything, we can feel a little less guilty about treating ourselves to a couple of post-race drinks this weekend.

You can watch his world record attempt here.