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May Wilkerson May Wilkerson

American Sets Women’s World Record in Beer Mile Championships

Scientist Elizabeth Herndon from Indiana downed four beers and ran one mile in six minutes and 17 seconds. You proud, America?

7 Substance

Winners Elizabeth Herndon and Cory Gallagher. Photo via

Winners Elizabeth Herndon and Corey Gallagher. Photo via

USA! USA! If you were searching for a reason to be proud of your country, an American scientist named Elizabeth Herndon set a new women’s world record this week in Austin, Texas, while competing in the Beer Mile World Championships. Herndon, 29, finished four beers and four laps in 6:17.76, beating the standing record held by last year’s winner, 44-year-old mother-of-six, Chris Kimbrough.

The beer mile, in case you were unaware, is a unique sporting event in which competitors drink one beer at the start of each of four quarter-mile laps. Though it was initially more of a private pastime, it’s become popular in recent years, especially a video went viral earlier this year of two-time NCAA champion James Nielsen, aka “The Beast,” claiming the first ever sub-five minute time.

Canada has reason to be proud, too. This year’s winner for men went to Corey Gallagher, a mailman from Winnipeg, who finished in 5:00.23. And the title was hard-earned: the 27-year-old has reportedly been honing his chugging skills for years using a beer bottle full of water. He also arrived a week early to the championships to test out different beers to determine which he could down the fastest (he settled on Budweiser Platinum because of its low carbonation). Gallagher also credits genetics for his accomplishment: “I’m one of those people that has an iron gut. I can eat a huge supper and go out for a run.”

Herndon, an environmental geochemist from Fort Wayne, Indiana, said she also practiced by focusing more on running than drinking, because: “I kind of figured (practicing with beer) would be more detrimental to my health than it would be beneficial.” After the race, she went out to celebrate her record-setting win at a local bar with pizza. And more beer. Because, America!