Record-setting athlete AJ Calitz is at it again, this time to compete for the Guinness World Record for “greatest vertical height climbing stairs in 12 hours”.
Calitz will have to trump American Chris Solarz’s current record of 10 060 metres, who had to repeatedly climb 48 flights of stairs of the Three Logan Place in Philadelphia in 2011 to win.
But having had already ascended more than the height of Mount Everest from sea level in 11 hours last year – and having been the victor of several races, Calitz is sure to have a fighting chance of toppling over the current record.
To coup the Guinness crown, Calitz will have to successfully run up Table Mountain’s Platteklip Gorge more than 14 times at this year’s K-Way Platteklip Charity Challenge on Saturday, 5 April. He currently holds the record for the highest number of ascents in 11 hours, which he set last year. His 12 summits amass to an accumulative 9 120 metres of climb – that’s almost 300 m higher than Mount Everest from sea level to summit!
The challenge requires individuals and teams to descend with the cableway, return to the bottom of the Gorge and complete as many 5, 5 km loops as possible between sunrise and sunset. The 2, 1 km climb goes up 800 double-size steps that ascends 760 m from the bottom to top.
“Driving from the cableway to the start of Platteklip, instead of running, will save me at least five or six minutes per lap and I’ve got the chance to relax and feed properly in the car,” says Calitz. “The ride also gives me the chance to recover mentally for the next one. When you’ve completed a lap or two and know you have another 13 to go… this time to relax is important.”
Up for the challenge?
The K-Way Platteklip Charity Challenge only takes 200 participants, entered as individuals or teams of 2-3. For detailed information on the race visit K-Way’s Charity Challenge site.