Kilian Jornet’s 24-Hour Record Attempt Doesn’t Even Last 11 Hours, Ends With Him Spending The Night In The Hospital
November 28, 2020
A year-and-a-half ago, we here at LetsRun.com declared that the greatest ultramarathon record was Yiannis Kouros‘ 24-hour record of 303.306 km (188.68 miles).
Imagine running 7.2 marathons in a 24-hour period or being able to average 7:37.9 mile pace for a full 24 hours. No one else in history has come close to Kouros. The next best man is more than 34 seconds per mile slower than Kouros (Russia’s Denis Zhalybin, who logged 282.282 km in 2006).
Well, on Friday, Kilian Jornet, the great Spanish mountain runner who has won virtually all of the top trail/mountain races in the world (and the man accused by some of lying about a Mt. Everest summit attempt), took a crack at Kouros’ amazing record in a race put on by his main sponsor Salomon on a track in Norway. Jornet said his 24-hour run was actually the first track race of his life. The event was called the Phantasm24, referring to the new shoe Jornet was wearing: the S/LAB Phantasm, a road racing flat from Salomon.
Before the race, Kouros threw shade on Jornet’s attempt. Kouros views the new shoe technology as a form of mechanical doping, and according to Canadian Running he wrote on Facebook,
“What a pity! to hear that there are athletes who considered as well known, but they seek short-cut ways and they try to innovate unfair methods in order to cheat! An easy way by short-cuts is always the unfair and the anti athletic way that equals to cheating …… !!!!!!”
In the end, Kouros had nothing to worry about as Jornet dropped out after covering 134.8 km (83.76 miles) in a little less than 11 hours. Today, Jornet posted messages on both Instagram and Twitter explaining he felt some chest pains, got dizzy, and spent the night in the hospital.
We know what many of you are wondering: Was Jornet on pace to break the record had he been able to run for 13 more hours? The answer is … not even close. Kouros in his record run covered 149.1 km in his first 11 hours.
The event ended up being won by Norway’s Harald Bjerke, who covered 232.28km (144.3 miles) in 24 hours. So Bjerke averaged 9:58.9 per mile for 24 hours while Kouros ran 7:37.9 per mile. A message board poster wrote that Kouros’ first recorded 24-hour run came in a six-day race during which he ran 263 km on day 1.
The statements from Jornet appear below.
Talk about the race on our message board. MB: Kilian Jornet will try to break the toughest ultra record in the books
View this post on Instagram
A MESSAGE FROM KILIAN
— Salomon (@SalomonSports) November 28, 2020