Ultra marathon runner Yiannis Kouros has been recognised for his impressive career, inducted into the Australian Ultra Runners Association’s (AURA) Hall of Fame alongside other great athletes.
“Baseball has Babe Ruth, basketball has Michael Jordan, ice hockey has Wayne Gretzky, cricket has Don Bradman, ultra running has Yiannis Kouros,” declared AURA President Rob Donkersloot.
Now aged in his 60’s, Kouros’ career dates back to the ’80s when he moved from Greece to Australia.
Despite now being retired, the benchmark he set continues to be an enduring legacy, as he still holds a number of world records that have yet to be beaten.
Among the world records Kouros holds are 24 hours (303.506kms, Adelaide 1997), 48 hours (473.495kms, Surgeres 1996), 6 days (1036kms, Colac 2005), 1000kms (5d 16:17, Colac 2005) and 1000 miles (10d 10:30, New York 1998).
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In 1983, he won the Spartathlon (245kms) in 21:53:42, and thereafter participated in the race three times, and won each one of them (1984, 1986 and 1990), his record breaking times remaining as the four fastest times in the event’s 36-year history.
It’s not the first time Kouros has been recognised by AURA; in 2002 he was awarded AURA’s Male Ultra Runner of the Year.
“AURA is very proud to induct one of its past members in Yiannis Kouros and formally recognise his incredible performances, many of which were set at events here in Australia,” Mr Donkersloot said.
“Yiannis so dominated our sport with his performances that it is unlikely some of his world records will ever be broken.”
Watch ‘Forever Running’, a documentary on Kouros written and directed by Elias Giannakakis (2004) with English subtitles.