The Queen St Golden Mile was first run in 1972, and then again in 1982 and 1983.
The 1972 event was run in December and won by Tony Polhill, (an Olympic 1500 metre finalist for NZ), in a time of 3 minutes 47.6 seconds. Kevin Ryan (Owairaka) was second with PC Reeves (Onehunga) third. The time was well under the then world record for the track mile of 3.51.1 held by J Ryan (USA).
The two events in the 80’s were televised nationally. They were run in April each year and were completely “Athletic” events, confined to registered IAAF athletes only.
The 1982 Molenberg Mile on Queen Street was won by American Steve Scott in 3.31.25, at the time the fastest mile in the world, 16 seconds faster than Sebastian Coe’s track mile world record of 3.47.33. Mike Hillardt (AUS) was second in 3.32.20, Ray Flynn (IRE) third in 3.32.75, with New Zealand’s John Walker fourth in 3.33.93. In the Women’s division, tiny Christine Hughes from Waikato, in her first run over the mile distance, recorded a 4.03.07 win, 14 seconds inside the official women’s world track mile record.
World's Fastest Mile
In the 1983 Queen St Golden Mile, an impressive international field lined up once more to tackle the fastest measured mile course in the world, this time without Walker, who was injured. Mike Boit (KEN) won in a time of 3m 28.36s, still the fastest mile on earth as recorded by the Guinness Book of World Records. Second was Steve Scott (USA), the 1982 winner, in a time of 3.29.44, with Ray Flynn (IRE) third in 3.29.66. For the second year in a row, Christine Hughes won the Women’s Mile in 4.02.93 just ahead of Brit McRoberts (CAN) who was second in 4.3.20.
A similar event in New York - the Fifth Avenue Mile - has become an iconic, international event, and a key yearly activity of the City Of New York for over 3 decades.