James Nielsen is the Roger Bannister of the beer mile.

The Canadian appears to have become the first person ever to break the 5:00 barrier. The former collegiate star chugged and sprinted alone on a local track where he lives in California.

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Canada: the Kenya of beer miling

The beer mile consists of drinking a beer and running a lap of a track four times. There are specific rules for a legitimate record attempt: the beers have to be 355 ml 5 per cent alcohol cans and must be consumed within a transition zone before each lap. Nielsen’s wife filmed his record-breaking run in full, without any cuts, and the former NCAA Division III 5,000m champ details the rules of the event beforehand, suggesting that his performance is above board.

Nielsen’s lap splits were impressive on their own: 63, 68,67,63 seconds per 400m lap. But his beer guzzling splits were where he excelled: 7, 8, 12 and 9 seconds per can, for a total of 4:57.

Nielsen, originally from Toronto, is now living in California and is the Vice President of sales for UStream, an online live streaming service. It appears that he broke the record on a local track in Marin Country, Calif.

Canadians are no strangers to elite level beer miling. Jim Finlayson of Victoria  ran 5:09 in 2007 to set the world record at the time. Our very own blogger Seanna Robinson still holds the women’s record of 6:42.


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