COUNTY NEWS: Tim Peake sets new world record for space marathon

Photo courtesy of Virgin Money London Marathon.

Photo courtesy of Virgin Money London Marathon.

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Sussex astronaut Tim Peake has achieved a new Guinness World Record title for the fastest marathon in orbit.

Major Peake ran the London Marathon on board the International Space Station (ISS) today (Sunday, April 24) in a time of 3:35.21.

Guinness World Records’ head of records Marco Frigatti adjudicated Peake’s attempt via live video link at the European Astronaut Centre of ESA in Cologne.

The record for the fastest marathon in orbit by a female is held by Sunita Williams, who ran in a time of 4:24 on April 16, 2007.

Marco Frigatti said: “Tim has captured the hearts and minds of the nation since his mission on-board the International Space Station began last year.

“His latest achievement is surely his greatest – running the fastest marathon in space, on the only day-off from his gruelling schedule is fantastic accomplishment. Tim is a true inspiration and someone we can all look up to. Literally.”

Major Peake launched today’s London Marathon with a pre-recorded good-luck message and countdown, which was shown on a big screen ahead of the race start.

The Chichester-based astronaut ran the 26.2 mile distance at the same time as thousands of people on Earth, including a team of UK Space Agency and European Space Agency (ESA) colleagues.

To counteract the effects of weightlessness, Major Peake used a harness to keep him on the running belt.

He said: “As soon as I was assigned my mission to the International Space Station, I realised that it was a wonderful opportunity to run the Digital Virgin Money London Marathon from on board the ISS.

“Being an ambassador for the Prince’s Trust, the marathon gives me the perfect opportunity to raise awareness for the important work they do to help disadvantaged young people to get their lives back on track.”

To donate, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/teamastronaut.

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