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Perry Newburn turns 60, continues run across U.S.

New Zealand ultra runner hopes to break the transcontinental record set in 1980.

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Ultra runner Perry Newburn celebrated his birthday on the road yesterday. The New Zealand native is 30 days into his 46-day trek across the continental United States.

According to the Moon Jogger's official Facebook page,

Perry turned 60 yesterday and is running across the USA to beat the current world record set 34 years ago by then 28 year old Frank Giannino's time of 46 days, 8 hours, and 36 minutes. It is going to be a close one!

When Giannino accomplished the feat in 1980, he began at city hall in downtown San Francisco and ended in New York City. He initially averaged 60 miles a day, but bumped the number up to 70 miles a day when Stan Cottrell finished a well-funded and highly publicized transcontinental run in 48 days.

As Newburn's camp reported last year, the now 60-year-old hopes to beat Giannino's time and accomplish a new Masters record for the fastest transcontinental run across the United States. By today's count, he must finish the run in the next 16 days or less. Newburn's currently running through Oklahoma towards the Texas border.

Many are following Newburn's record attempt via social media with hashtag #goperrygo. Some have even joined him for short stretches and long paces of the run. With each passing day, more coverage of the event floods Facebook and Twitter.

The run just isn't for the record attempt. Newburn lists Koru Care, a children's charity in New Zealand, and the Little Heroes Foundation, a global organization dedicated to improving children's mental and physical well-being, as benefactors. For more information, or to donate to Newburn's attempt and the Moon Jogger's charitable mission, visit the official website.