New IAU World Record Guidelines for 2022

The International Association of Ultrarunners (IAU) has published updated world records guidelines, which involve nomenclature, ratification processes, race requirements, and what distances are eligible to have official world records. The guidelines, approved on September 19, 2021, will take effect on January 1, 2022.

New IAU World Records Guidelines in a Nutshell

Here are the key updates to the IAU guidelines:
  • The IAU will now manage IAU World Records for the following distances and fixed times: 50 miles, 100 miles, six hours, 12 hours, 24 hours, 48 hours, and six days. This means the IAU will no longer manage world records for 1,000 kilometers and 1,000 miles, as it has in the past, due to declining interest in the distances.
  • World Athletics (WA) will now manage WA World Records for the following distances: 50 kilometers and 100 kilometers. Previous to this, no governing body managed world records for the 50-kilometer distance.
  • The official nomenclature for these records are International Association of Ultrarunners World Records (IAU WR) and World Athletics World Records (WA WR), respectively.
  • To be considered for IAU WR and WA WR ratification, all athletes must have evidence of a negative doping test which follows current World Anti Doping Agency and WA rules.
  • To qualify for an IAU WR, a minimum of three athletes of the same gender as the potential record holder must participate in the race.
  • For an IAU WR to be valid, the event at which it is set must take place using World Athletics (WA) regulations and have an IAU label.
  • When a distance is competed on the roads, measurement of the course must follow both WA and IAU standards, and course certifications aged five years or older are not eligible for IAU WR ratification.

Further Reading

To learn more, here’s the full IAU World Records Guidelines document, as well as a secondary statement published on October 11, 2021.
Aiko Kanematsu - 2018 IAU 100k World Championships 2

Japan’s Aiko Kanematsu finishes the 2018 IAU 100k World Championships. Photo: iRunFar/Bryon Powell

Andrew Marshall

is a writer, painter, and photographer with work in publications across the web. Andrew lives, runs, bikes, paddles, and skis in the Tahoe basin on the California/Nevada state line. He's one of the few unapologetic cat people in the outdoor industry. You can find him on Instagram or Twitter.