SA trail runners Christiaan Greyling, AJ Calitz break Guinness World Record on Table Mountain
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Cape Town – South African trail runners Christiaan Greyling and AJ Calitz have broken the Guinness World Record for the greatest vertical distance on foot, on Table Mountain’s Platteklip Gorge.
The pair beat the previous record of 13 ascents in 24 hours by completing a gruelling 14 ascents in 20 hours, with 19 376m climbed on Monday.
Greyling lives in Stellenbosch, and has won the Ultra Trail Cape Town 100, Skyrun 100, Otter trail 42. He also ranks in the top four men in the International Trail Running Association (ITRA) general classification in South Africa and 1st in the XL classification (90-100km with 5000m ascent).
Calitz, who hails from Melkbos, has also accomplished his fair share of successes as he is the record holder for Fish River Canyon 100km, champion of 2016 SA Ultra Trail and four-time Red Bull Lionheart winner.
“We are absolutely delighted and overjoyed to have broken the world record for the most vertical ascent and descent, on a route that is well known to us, Platteklip Gorge on Table Mountain, one of the New7Wonders of Nature,” said Greyling.
“It was one of the toughest days of my life with the added pressure of doing it in 20 hours because of curfew but my K-Way partner, AJ, was strong and motivated me to triumph in what was an achievement of two very dedicated teammates.”
Greyling said fatigue had set in as it had been a “very hot day … but there was no way we could stop”.
“We are absolutely broken but so happy. This is nothing short of a miracle and a team effort,” said Calitz, who also holds the Guinness World Record for The Most Vertical Height Gained in 12 hours (10,257m), set on the same mountain in 2014.
“We did this because both myself and AJ are ultra-runners and we like a challenge. We also wanted to raise awareness for Edunova, a non-profit company focused on the effective use of technology in disadvantaged schools throughout South Africa,” Greyling said.