On 24 May a team of RAF runners broke the world record for 100 x 10km relay by over 4 hours. Beginning on 21 May at 13:00 the entire relay took 64hours 36minutes and 22seconds to complete, but smashed the previous world record of over 69hours, set by an American team in 2015. By the evening of the first day the team had already taken an hour off the previous record. An average 10km time of 38 minutes meant that as the attempt progressed, their lead on the World Record increased.*
Guinness World Record
In order to get the attempt officially verified by Guinness, the organisation team had to record the effort in its entirety and use independent timekeepers. Pending the evidence being accepted by Guinness World Records, the RAF team will appear in the next issue of the Guinness book of World Records.*
The team were made up entirely of RAF personnel from across the nation. Participants varied from Aircraftmen through to Group Captain John Lawlor who ran the first leg of the attempt and also serves as the RAF Athletics Association Chairman. The fastest time was Officer Cadet Sam Mitchell who ran his 10km in 31:54.
Senior Aircraftman Michael Kallenberg, one of the RAF’s top athletes and a Team GB 50km was the runner who brought the attempt home, which was apt given the endeavour had been his idea. Kallenberg said “I’m delighted that we’ve broken the record in the manner that we did. A lot of work went into it and I want to say a huge thanks to the organising committee, the athletes, the hardworking timekeepers, The Royal British Legion who have supported the association and the attempt so well, the support staff and those who came to cheer us on. ”
The Legion have sponsored the RAF Athletics Association since September 2016 and continue to sponsor a wide variety of sports across the Armed Forces.
*Awaiting official verification from the Guinness World Record