day World Record attempt
Monaco 17-23 November 2007
Darlington Building Society
The full report
from the 6 day world record attempt is now available to download:
6 Day Race Report.rtf (47KB)
as it happened:
November 2007 8pm:
Sharon has called
with news from Monaco. After 46 hours and 230 kms she has had to
pull out of the race with an ankle injury. Her left ankle was getting
progressively worse and after her first sleep stop of 4 hours on
Sunday night, she awoke to find it black and blue with bruising
on both sides of her foot.
on to the point it was only possible to do a slow walk, and realised
that the goal of the British and World records were now out of reach.
So to avoid the possibility of causing a more serious injury she
very reluctantly decided to cut her losses and withdraw from the
She does however
remain determined to have a go at the record at this distance again
in the future, but probably at a different race, as she does feel
that the course contributed to the problems she suffered. The course
was in part cobbled, and was also twisty with cambered sections.
In addition to this is was at times severely congested with people
meaning there was a lot of weaving about trying to make progress
through the crowds.
Sharon and Bill
are now making their way home, and a full report will follow in
November 2007 9pm: First race report from Monaco
Bill has called
from Monaco, where he says the temperature is about 10 degrees colder
than normal, at just 10 Deg C. Bill and Sharon travelled down through
very cold and even snowy weather and the warmer weather didn't start
until they reached Cannes.
They have had to change their carefully calculated schedule as the
organisers made a last minute change and moved the start time from
12 noon to 2pm. In fact Sharon is yet to stop to sleep with Sunday
night 1am-5.30am being her first scheduled sleep stop. She has however
been taking a 45 min break from running every 4 hours. Bill has
managed to grab some sleep in the day to keep going for his all
important support job!
The course in
Monaco is quite congested as this is also a big charity event. There
are a lot of school children in the area for the event, which was
officially started yesterday by Princess Stephanie of Monaco.
has completed 96 miles in the first 24 hours, after a few niggles
left her slightly behind her schedule. She has had some hamstring
problems and a slightly sprained ankle on the cobbled section and
had to take a longer unscheduled break, but everything has settled
down now and she is back on track. She has 10 miles to make up on
her schedule, but is still well ahead of the nearest challenger
who is a Dutch lady also going for her national record.
I am very pleased
to announce that Darlington Building Society has stepped in as the
sponsor for this event and are covering my entire costs for the
event. I have regularly seen Peter Rowley, Chief Executive for Darlington
Building Society at running events in the region and surprised at
how many staff I was introduced to that are regular runners.
event is also to raise funds for Asthma UK and Darlington Building
Society has generously donated a large sum to my chosen charity.
There will also be an account open at all Darlington Building Society
branches for anyone wishing to donate to this enormous challenge
(or through their website at www.darlington.co.uk).
Asthma UK is
my chosen charity, as I never get through a whole year of racing
without dropping out of races due to my asthma.
Asthma UK’s is dedicated to improving the health and well
being of the 5.2 million people in the UK with asthma.
Above: Peter Rowley, Chief Executive of Darlington Building Society
and also a keen runner with Sharon
Above: Peter Rowley, Darren Ditchburn (Guisborough Branch Manager)
and Sharon accepting the cheque on behalf of Asthma UK.
Women’s Female World Record:
Catherine Cunningham (AUS), 820.765km set in New York, 2001
British Female Record:
Pippa Davis (GBR), 730.642km set in New York, 1995
British Men’s Record:
Richard Brown (GBR), 833.640km set in New York, 1988
This event starts at 12 noon on Saturday 17th November
2007 and finishes at 12 noon on Friday 23rd November 2007. This
involves running around a small loop around a mile in distance on
the harbour front at Monaco, with the winner based on the runner
that completes the furthest distance in this time. The course is
not ideal having a small section of cobbles and a pier section that
involves a 180 degree u-turn and several sharp corners. There are
other events being held alongside this race such as an 8-day race,
24-hour race and several shorter distances where local communities
are involved, which can add considerably to the congestion of the
course. I am doing the 6-day race as opposed to 8 days as this is
a standard distance recognised by the IAU and has Bronze Label status.
My plan is to first break the British Record of
730km, then continue on with my World Record bid to run further
than 820km, but as the British Men’s record is only a matter
of 13km further, if conditions are right I will push on to be break
Judging by previous results it appears that a lot
more mileage is run on the first day while fresh and then a more
settling in pace is achieved for the remaining 5 days. As a rough
translation 820km is approximately 510 miles, this means an average
of 85 miles a day for 6 days. My plan will be to run over 100 miles
on the first day and then hopefully follow this through with 85
miles a day to finish with a target distance of 525 miles (in km
this translates to approximately 160km the first day followed by
135km for the remaining 5 days) approx 835km.
Driving to the event will be essential to have all
the facilities and back up needed for the event. The use of our
campervan will be vital to be able to sleep in privacy and for all
the cooking needs of hot drinks and food to be prepared. My husband
Bill will be my sole support crew for the event and the van is also
somewhere for Bill to shelter should the weather not be too kind.
A strict schedule has been prepared for running
times, break times and sleeping times. The schedule is based on
my experience of running Lands End to John O’Groats where
I broke the World Record for running 837 miles over 12 days and
16 hours. For this event I ran 85 miles the first day and settled
in for 65 miles for the next 5 days, completing 414 miles over the
first 6 days. This event will mean running 20 miles further per
day, but there are big differences without having extra distractions
of navigation, traffic, roundabouts, planning for campervans for
food preparation and of course it is only half the time involved.
Sleep will be limited to 4 hours per night as I found from LEJOG
I cannot concentrate on less sleep than this.
World Records do not come easily and this will be
a tough event, 20 miles further per day is still a lot of extra
work for the legs and particularly feet that do take a bashing.
It will be a massive challenge to see just how far the body can
run and stand up to the pressures of such extreme daily mileage.
Then of course will come the usual questions posed
by the media on finishing – what is your next challenge? Well
subject to the World 24 Hours being announced there are some really
special events lined up for 2008, some of the most extreme and exciting
ones I can find – after last years Libyan Challenge (which
I would really love to run again in 2008) there is the Marathon
des Sables, a 7 day stage race across the Sahara Desert with only
water for supplies, next will be the hottest race on earth, a race
across Death Valley - the Badwater 135 miles, and hopefully to finish
the year a run to enjoy – the South African Kalahari Augrabies
Extreme Marathon and another 7 day self supported stage race. Plans
may change depending on whether I compete in the annual World 24
Hours as a date has yet to be confirmed for this event.