In January 1928, Newton traveled to England where, on the Bath Road in snow and floods, he lowered his 100-mile record by another 21 minutes, to 14:22. In March 1928 he started in the professional Transcontinental Race, which was run in about 80 daily stages of between 30 and 75 miles each, from Los
Exercises 5.2 Arthur Newton finishing his London-to-Brighton run in 1924. Note. Photo courtesy of Vernon Jones.
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Angeles to New York, for a prize of $25,000. A fictional story, Flanagan’s Run (McNab, 1982), is based on that race, but those who wish to read a faithful record of what actually happened in the race should read Running in Three Continents (Newton, 1940). Newton also competed in the 1929 Transcontinental Race but retired after being struck by a car and fracturing his arm.
In 1930 and 1931, Newton teamed up with the Englishman Peter Gavuzzi for the two-person, 500-mile Distillers’ Corporation Montreal-Quebec-Montreal International Snow Shoe Race in Canada, and on both occasions they won handsomely. Toward the end of 1931 Newton ran what was probably his greatest racethe 24-hour world record. This race, which cost Newton $1,000 to enter, was run on a tiny, indoor, square (to avoid giddiness) track that measured 13 laps to the mile and was located at the Arena in Hamilton, Ontario. Newton’s final distance of 152 miles and 540 yards remained the world’s best for 22 years until it was surpassed by another South African and Comrades Marathon legend, Wally Hayward (see post 8), who ran 159 miles 562 yards in 1953.
In 1933, Newton returned to the Bath Road in England where, despite Achilles tendinitis and the fact that he did not complete the full distance, his time of 7:15:30 at 60 miles was good enough for another world record.