Filipino expatriate Romil Putong Abule now holds the new Guinness World Records for the ‘Fastest crossing of Qatar on foot (male)’, completing the feat in one day, eight hours, and 59 minutes on October 20, 2022.
“I cannot describe how happy I am because to be honest, I really didn’t expect to finish it,” Abule, 35, told Gulf Times, noting a number of challenges along the way, including the hot weather in October.
The record was previously held by Tunisian athlete Sadok Kochbati, a fitness coach, gym instructor, and ultra-runner, who finished the run in one day, 10 hours, 19 minutes, and 18 seconds on February 4, 2022.
According to a post on the Guinness World Records website, Abule “wanted to achieve this record as a challenge for himself and to be an inspiration to others, especially his family”.
Abule said that he had no previous sports endeavour or running experience in the Philippines before coming to Qatar. However, he was prompted to do running as an expatriate to fight homesickness. Since then, he often participated in a number of races in Qatar.
“This was the start of his sporting journey and the next thing he knew, he has been doing it throughout the past 10 years. His goal is to be recognised as one of the best Filipino runners in Qatar,” Guinness World Records noted.
Abule said he started his journey at Al Ruwais at 5.30pm on October 20 and continued to Qatar’s major highways, but had to pause every hour to make a two-minute documentation with a number of witnesses (more than 30 persons of different nationalities) since there was no adjudicator from Guinness. After a day, he said he rested for approximately 30 minutes before resuming the run.
“There were moments that I had to slow down because I was really tired and had only a few minutes of rest,” he said.
After submitting all the needed documentation last year, Abule said Guinness replied on April 28 saying his application “for Fastest crossing of Qatar on foot (male) has been successful and you are now the Guinness World Records Title Holder!”
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