Crazy 8s History

Crazy 8s is world-renowned for its unique figure-8 course, with candle-lit streets, and thrilling stadium finish. Huge crowds gather along the course to cheer for the runners.

Outstanding Achievements

World’s Fastest 8K:

In 1996, Peter Githuka from Kenya set a new 8K World Record at Crazy 8’s with a time of 22:03. Asmae Leghzaoui of Morocco broke the women’s world record in 2002 in 24:28. Both records still stand. The Regional Eye Center offers a $10,008 bonus for the first man to break the existing world record. Bank of Tennessee sponsors the $5,000 Dash For The Gold to the first male to cross the finish line in the 8K Run.

Voted Top Road Race:

Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine named the Crazy 8s 8K Run the Top Road Race of 2008.

Top 5 Ranking:
  1. Crazy 8s 8K – Kingsport, TN
    Presented by Indian Path Medical Center & SunTrust Bank
  2. Cooper River Bridge 10K – Charleston, SC
  3. Peachtree Road Race 10K – Atlanta, GA
  4. Ukrops Monument Avenue 10K – Richmond, VA
  5. Cherry Blossom 10-Miler – Washington, D.C.

Charitable Earnings:

In 2013, Crazy 8s raised $11,000 for the Neil Danehy Heart Foundation.

1980s – The Fun Fest road race goes back to 1981 with the beginning of Fun Fest. The first race was run on Bays Mountain, but moved to the Ft. Henry Mall a year later. The race, named the Fun Fest Midnight 5 Miler, became the “kickoff” event to Fun Fest as a Friday midnight event.

1990s – In 1990, the event changed to the Crazy 8s format, adopting a new 8-Kilometer course with a unique figure-8 design and candle-lit streets. Crazy 8s also moved from Friday night to Saturday night, and moved its start/finish down the street to the Greenacres Shopping Center. A walk was also added in 1990, and Little 8s Youth Runs in 1993. In 1996 Peter Githuka shocked the world by running a new 8K world record at Crazy 8s.

2002 - Asmae Leghzaoui broke the women’s world record in 2002, crossing the finish line in 24:28. Crazy 8s became one of only a few races in the world to hold both genders’ world records.

2006 - In 2006, the event uprooted and moved to J. Fred Johnson Stadium with a thrilling finish inside the stadium. In 2006, the Healthy Lifestyles Expo was introduced along with a new name for the 3k Heart Walk – Neil’s Walk, named in memory of a good friend, Neil Danehy.

2007 – Special 8s, an event for individuals with special needs, was born, and the $5000 Dash-For-The-Gold was introduced.

2008Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine named Crazy 8s the top road race of 2008, finishing ahead of such mega-races as the Peachtree 10K in Atlanta and Cooper River Bridge Run in Charleston. In November of 2008, the Tikrit Running Club, a group of runners from the U.S. Army base in Tikrit, Iraq, staged the first ever Crazy 8s 8K Run in Iraq. Crazy 8s also received the Gold Award for Best Event within an Event at the 2008 Southeast Festival and Events Association Kaleidoscope Awards.

2013 – Crazy 8s had over 4100 participants, marking a tremendous 85% growth since 2004!