There were shorter 8-hour versions of these Pepsi events, too. In Toledo (Ohio), it was a 2-mile loop. The 24-hour versions had a 5-mile loop (at least the Detroit one that my parents wouldn't let me attend did).
No drafting of any sort was allowed. Lots of dodging kids on Big Wheels and on bikes with training wheels was involved for the first few hours. Free Pepsi. The slowing to a crawl every lap to have your vest stamped was incredibly tiresome. Overall, though, the events had a good vibe (and not just because they suited my riding strengths).
For some of us, they were a pretty cool exposure to lengthy events of this sort (back before ultra-distance was an everyday term). In my little Pepsi pond, I remember doing pretty well -- winning my age group every year, and doing 176 miles in the last one I entered.
I wouldn't have had a clue how to do a 24-hour version, but I sure would've liked to have tried a couple of times.
Scott Minneman San Francisco, CA
-----Original Message----- From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of firstname.lastname@example.org Sent: Monday, July 02, 2007 2:28 PM To: email@example.com Subject: Re: [CR]Ted Ernst-12Hour Race
Back in the 70's for a couple of years, the NY Council of AYH ran an event
in Central Park called the Pepsi Marathon. Riders wore a paper/tyvek vest
and did laps of the park getting stamped every time they crossed the start
line. It went on for 24 hours and was the only time there has been legal
camping with tents in the park! I believe John Howard entered one year with
the intention of breaking the 24 hour mileage record. He had a team to pace
him and carry food and water to him. In a preparation that I thought was a
bit over the top, he also had himself catheterized so he wouldn't have to
stop to pee.
Ridgewood, NJ USA