FloTrack Beer Mile World Championships

Michigan Beer Mile Serves as FloTrack Beer Mile Qualifier

Michigan Beer Mile Serves as FloTrack Beer Mile Qualifier

Oct 28, 2015 by Meg Bellino
Michigan Beer Mile Serves as FloTrack Beer Mile Qualifier

Flat Rock Speedway outside of Monroe, Michigan will host the first ever Michigan Beer Mile on November 14

“You add beer to anything, it kind of makes it hilarious”

That’s Lex Williams, former University of Michigan All American and founder of the first ever Michigan Beer Mile.

A Michigan native, Williams ran under Ron Warhurst for five seasons in Ann Arbor. After a stint of training in the Northeast, he was hired as a graduate assistant coach for Illinois State, where he coached the Redbirds for two years.

Now back in Ann Arbor, Williams has started his own running events company, Boogahonk LLC. Their first major challenge? Hosting the first ever Michigan Beer Mile at Flat Rock Speedway in Carleton, Mich., on Saturday November 14.

“I think I had an idea for it even before the FloTrack beer mile, but I thought we could brand off that and do something in Michigan,” Williams said.

The accomplished runner himself - he broke 4:00 this summer at the Sir Walter Miler - Williams wanted to create an environment where runners of all skill levels could try the beer mile without a risk. “It’s a place where people could try it for the first time and not worry about getting a ticket,” Williams said. “And also have an official team for record purposes, set up designated drivers and have a fun festival surrounding it.”

The event will take place at Flat Rock Speedway on a 400m banked track. With that in mind, a fast enough qualifying time by the winners (under 5:20 for men, under 7:00 for women) earns them a spot on the start line at the 2015 FloTrack Beer Mile World Championships in Austin, Texas.

Williams thinks the allure of the event to the mainstream world has something to do with the “hilarity” of adding beer to the sport. “Running is an awesome sport but it makes it kind of special when you add other elements,” Williams said, citing Nick Willis and his involvement in speed golf as another example.

Boogahonk, LLC was created with this idea in mind. Williams plans on inventing team oriented running events that people can do with friends. “I know I have a lot of post collegiate friends in the area that still run but they don’t have much to train together towards,” Williams said. Putting a unique event together forces participants to train for the other elements, in this case chugging beer.

“I’m pretty bad at the beer mile,” Williams laughed. “I’ve never finished one, that’s my goal. To do it and finish it. I’ve been chugging La Croix water to try and train for this. After I hang up I’m probably going to chug two with short rest.”

The Michigan Beer Mile already has 75 people signed up (as of October 26) and registration will remain open until the races begin. Registration is $35 per individual online or $45 at the door, with two different relay options available (2x[2x400] and 4x400). A portion of every entry fee will go toward the Movember Foundation. Though Williams isn’t quite sure if there will be a prize for “Best ‘Stache,” the timing of the event in the middle of November allowed for the event to partner with the charity.

Beer will be provided for registered individuals and no one under the age of 21 will be permitted at the event. Folks can register for the Michigan Beer Mile and find all of the rules for this unique event at www.themichiganbeermile.com and follow them on Twitter and Facebook.

A week after the Michigan Beer Mile, Williams will host the Centaur XC Race on November 21. Hosted on an equestrian course, Centaur XC will be an 8km contest with trails, steeple barriers, water pits and team scoring. (More info on this unique opportunity can be found HERE)