On 16 June 2019, eight intrepid runners took to the start line of the world's longest certified road race - the 23rd edition of the Sri Chinmoy Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race. Over the next seven weeks, the runners will aim to complete a daily average of 60 miles or more in order to finish the race within the official time limit of 52 days. The runners have to contend with the hot New York summer, a hard concrete course and the many physical and mental challenges of competing in this epic of self-transcendence.
The race was founded by spiritual teacher and ultra-runner pioneer Sri Chinmoy, who saw distance running as a vehicle to enable runners to bring to the fore their physical, mental and spiritual capacities to complete this unique challenge.
“We have to believe in a higher Power.
Only by believing in a higher Power
Can we go beyond and beyond
Our limited, human capacity.”
– Sri Chinmoy 
In this year's race, we have Asprihanal Aalto from Finland, an eight-time winner of the race and current course record holder for men in a time of 40 days+09:06:21. Also returning to the race is three-times winner Vasu Duzhiy from Russia, he is the current champion, having won in 2018. Other returning 3100 Mile runners include Smarana Puntigam (Austria), Nirbhasa Magee (Ireland), Ushika Muckenhummer (Austria) and Ananda-Lahari Zuscin (Slovakia). The only women running this year is Harita Davies - who returns after a gap of two years, to see if she can improve on her first time finishing of 51 days+12:48:14. Todor Dimitrov from Sofia, Bulgaria completes the field and he will be making his first attempt at 3100 Mile Race.
As well as the eight runners, there is a crew of dedicated volunteers who put on the race, including counters, medics, cooks and the organising crew.
Video of day one
The race featured at the BBC
To follow the race