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Four Bizarre Stories From London Marathon 2024

Marathons always seem to attract an eclectic variety of runners, and last Sunday's London Marathon was no exception. Here are the entertaining stories about four of this year's participants.

Royal Marine training with a fridge on his back
Sam Hammond training with a fridge on his back | Credit: Sam Hammond
Fridget Jones

A Royal Marine who ran the London Marathon carrying a fridge has set a world record, the Royal Navy says. Cpl Sam Hammond, 30, completed the 26.2-mile route with the appliance, dubbed 'Fridget Jones', on his back last Sunday in four hours and 52 minutes. The Royal Navy said he beat the previous world record by 57 minutes. The record attempt will now be verified by Guinness World Records, says the BBC. He had already scooped his first Guinness World Record for running a half-marathon with his fridge, weighing in at 57.9lb (26.3kg), in Brighton in February. The record comes under the bizarre category of 'marathon carrying a household appliance (white goods)'.

There are no official marathon categories for these next two stories (yet)...

George Scholey in London Marathon
George Scholey
Bit of a Puzzler

"Professional Rubik's Cube solver" George Scholey, aged 22, unscrambled around 520 of the puzzles during last weekend's London Marathon - 100 more than the previous record, said the BBC. The 22-year-old was handed backpacks containing scrambled Cubes every two miles along the 26.2-mile course, which he completed in four hours and 25 minutes, while "capturing footage of each solved puzzle with a head-worn camera". His feat is now being verified by the Guinness World Records.

Tom Gilbey in London Marathon
Tom Gilbey
Wine Marathon

Wine expert Tom Gilbey raised more than £12,000 ($15,000) for charity by completing a blind wine tasting while running in the marathon. The vintner took a swig after every mile, and managed to correctly identify an "extraordinary" 21 out of 25 wines, said the Daily Mail. And even with his boozy pitstops, Gibley completed the course in under five hours. Perhaps he's also eligible to win the record for most wine consumed during a marathon? Some would say that the British marathon really should have an alcohol consumption category!

And last, but by no means least...

Hardest Geezer

"A stretch of the legs" is how athlete Russ Cook, aka 'Hardest Geezer', described running the London Marathon last Sunday. It's a reasonable comment considering it's only two weeks since he completed a 352-day run across the length of Africa, which is the equivalent of running 385 consecutive marathons.

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