Top 7 - Tan Track Facts

Top 7 – Tan Track Facts

Top 7 – Tan Track Facts


Top 7 Facts – The Tan

The Tan Track, which runs around the Botanic Gardens, is Melbourne’s mecca for running. Every day the track is full of runners of all ages and abilities. If you have never made it down there then check it out!

1. The tan was originally constructed in the early 1900’s as a tanbark horse-riding track. These days the track is nearly all gravel, with the tan name relating to the tan-like colour of the sandy track.


2. lap of the Tan is 3.827km and has distance markers every 250m. The official start point of the clockwise lap is at the Pillars of Wisdom near the junction of Olympic Boulevard and Alexandra Avenue.

Map of the Tan


  1. Notable Australian runners, such as Robert de Castellaand Steve Moneghetti, have held the record for the quickest lap of the Tan. The current record is 10 minutes and 8 seconds, run by Craig Mottram in 2006. He set this record whilst running with the Richmond Football Club during their pre-season training. Mottram gave the footballers a two-and-a-half minute head start and still managed to beat them comprehensively!

The top 10 fastest times are displayed on a plaque next to the course


  1. The Tan is fully floodlight until midnight so it’s a great place to go during the darker winter months.


  1. The most well-known part of the Tan is the stretch along Anderson Street. When taken uphill this 600m at a 4% incline can really get the legs burning! In March 2014, Melbourne chiropractor Mike Melling-Williams, 44, everested the Anderson Street hill. It took him 24 hours and six minutes to cycle up the hill 328 times to reach the required 8848m of climbing!

Anderson Street Hill – it can be a real heartbreaker when the legs are tired!


  1. Domain Road on the South Side of the Tan is the best place to grab a post run coffee or bite to eat. Café Domain, The Botanical and Gilson are all popular spots.

Café Domain on Domain Road


  1. The Tan Track is the home to many of Melbourne’s most well-known running clubs and groups including The Victorian Road Runners, Melbourne Midday Milers, The Crosbie Crew and the de Castella Runners. Running with a group is a great way to add structure and targets to your training.

Me running the Tan Relays in 2016

Hopefully these facts have inspired you to get out running and take on the Tan! If you need any further running or footwear advice, I am based at South Yarra Spine and Sports Medicine, only 1km away.


Check out John’s Running Podiatry website to help you take the next step –

Like SYSSM on Facebook for more running tips and behind the scenes action from SYSSM.


SYSSM Podiatrist

John Charles graduated with honours in Podiatry from the University in London, and has since worked in both public and private practice. Additionally, he has completed additional training in dry needling and sports massage, and regularly employs these therapies in his podiatry practice. He has extensive experience in video gait analysis, fitting of athletic footwear, and prescribing orthotics and insoles.