On Sunday 23rd August, Ian Bailey set out to run an ‘Everest’ on Slieve Donard, 37 times from saddle to summit and back for a total ascent of around 9,250m (8,848m the height of Everest from sea level plus a few metres for luck). Everesting can take place on any hill anywhere in the world as long as you stick to the official rules and is completed in a continuous effort. Before Bailey started out, the Irish record was 23 hours 52 minutes, the British record was 16 hours 44 minutes, European record was 12 hours 31 minutes and World record was 11 hours 19 minutes.
Bailey commented that it was “without a doubt the toughest thing I’ve ever experienced. The hardest bit by far though was getting down off the mountain afterwards. Body went into total shock. Huge, huge thanks to everyone who came out to give support, especially the lads who ran with me. You made the difference. And to Anna Bailey and my boys for coming up and for fixing me afterwards but an incredible massive thanks to Caoimhe Connor, who helped me set up the whole challenge and stood on a soaking mountain for a whole day taking my abuse and dishing out my food. Above and beyond doesn’t begin to describe it!”
On Monday evening, it was confirmed that Bailey had broken the World Everesting running record. 8,848m of ascent and descent in 11 hours 17 minutes, beating the previous record by just two minutes. Congratulations from everyone at Newcastle & District AC.