Born in Halifax, West Yorkshire, he moved with his family to Sydney Mines, Nova Scotia. At age 11 he supported his family by working in the coal mines. As a teenager he won local races. He won the Canadian five-mile (8 km) championship in 1925 and finished third in the one-mile later that day. He also won the Halifax Herald 10-mile (16 km) competition in the same year. Miles was employed delivering groceries throughout the countryside by horse and wagon. To stay in shape he would run behind the wagon wearing heavy boots.
John Christopher Miles
Nickname(s) Johnny, Jack
Born October 30, 1905
Halifax, West Yorkshire, England
Died June 15, 2003 (aged 97)
Height 5' 6-1/2"
Weight 133 lb (60 kg)
In 1926 Miles's neighbours raised a few hundred dollars to send him to the Boston Marathon by train. This would be Miles's debut marathon, having never run a race longer than 10 miles. The field at the 1926 Boston Marathon included four-time winner Clarence DeMar and 1924 Olympic champion Albin Stenroos, whom Miles idolized. Miles arrived at the marathon as an unknown, competing in a handmade singlet adorned with a maple leaf and the letters "NS" for Nova Scotia and a pair of 98-cent sneakers. Stenroos attempted to break away after the first few miles, leaving DeMar behind. Miles stayed with him until Heartbreak Hill, at which point he passed him. Miles completed the race in a time of 2:25:40. His time was so fast that the course was remeasured and found to be 176 yards short.
Miles attempted to defend his title at the 1927 Boston Marathon, but dropped out early due to problems with his shoes.
In 1929 Miles returned to Boston and won the marathon in a time of 2:33:08.
Miles competed in two more Boston Marathons, never finishing higher than 10th.
Coached by John W. Miles his father
Achievements and titles
1925 Canadian 5-mile champion
1928 Canadian 10000m champion
Olympic finals 1928 Summer Olympics
1932 Summer Olympics
British Empire Games
Bronze medal – third place 1930 Hamilton Marathon
Johnny Miles Wins 1926 Boston Marathon , he was from Sydney Mines, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia,Canada
Biography Johnny Miles was born October 30, 1905 in England.
Soon afterwards, his family moved to Sydney Mines, Cape Breton. Johnny began his running career in 1922 as a sixteen-year-old.
By 1925, he was the Canadian champion in the 5-mile distance, and was considered Nova Scotia"s top distance runner.
In 1926, Johnny arrived at his first Boston Marathon and was pegged as a "curly-haired, befreckled, saucy-nosed, 22-year-old" who had never competed in a race more than ten miles long.
Before the race began, the big story was the match-up between Clarence DeMar and Albin Stenroos, two of the greatest marathoners in the world.
But the "unknown" from Nova Scotia shocked everyone by winning the Marathon.
Miles won it again in 1929, making him the only Nova Scotian to win the Boston Marathon twice, an unbelievable feat.
Johnny Miles was also a member of the Canadian Olympic Track Team in 1928 and 1932 where he placed 16th and 14th, respectively. He also won a bronze medal as a member of the 1930 British Empire Games Track Team. Miles received several prestigious awards in recognition of his talents. In 1929, he received the Will Cloney International Award for Sports, and in 1969 was inducted into Canada"s Sports Hall of Fame. He received the Dalhousie Award in 1971. In 1983, he was awarded the Order of Canada, this country"s highest honor. Johnny Miles holds a rightful place in Nova Scotia's sport history, He is an original Sport Hall of Fame inductee.