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Another week, another Everesting world record. This past Saturday, American pro Katie Hall (Boels-Dolmans) set a new women’s world record for the fastest Everesting, reaching the target of 8,848 vertical metres (29,029 feet) in 10 hours, one minute and 42 seconds.
The 33-year-old climber achieved the feat by completing 28 laps of the steep 3.7 km (2.3 mile) climb (average gradient of 9%) to the town of Bonny Doon, just north west of Santa Cruz, California. Hall’s time was more than two and a half hours faster than the previous women’s world record of 12:32, set by Alice Thomson in the UK in August 2018.
Hall posted her record-breaking ride to Strava with the description “I feel fine!!!”
Hall only decided to tackle an Everesting a few days before her attempt, signing up for Rebecca Rusch’s “Giddy Up For Good” challenge to raise money for COVID-19 relief. “I decided yesterday to do a crazy thing,” Hall wrote on Instagram, “to try and climb the height of Mt Everest this Saturday and to raise money for #covid19 relief, bike infrastructure, and getting bicycles to essential workers.
“I’m not 100% sure I’m gonna make it to that elevation, but I know that money going towards these issues that I care about will motivate me!”
Hall was joined on her record-breaking ride by former MTB world champion Kate Courtney.
“I did 15k [feet of climbing] in just over 5 hours and was exhausted!,” Courtney wrote on Instagram. “Meanwhile Katie held that pace for twice as long and crushed the Everesting record in 10 hours. So impressed and proud!! That challenge is no joke.”
Hall is regarded as one of the world’s best climbers and has won nearly every North American race of note: Tour of California, Redlands Classic, Tour of the Gila, Joe Martin Stage Race, and Colorado Classic. She has also won the Tour Femenino de San Luis in Argentina, and was seventh at the Giro Rosa in 2019.
Hall is the latest in a string of pro and former-pro racers to tackle an Everesting – riding the height of Mt. Everest in one ride by completing repeats of the same hill. The likes of Richie Porte, Cameron Wurf, Mark Cavendish and James Piccoli have all completed an Everesting in the past year, so too Phil Gaimon who set a new world record on May 11 with a time of 7 hours 52 minutes and 12 seconds. His record stood for just four days until mountain biker Keegan Swenson beat Gaimon’s mark by just over 12 minutes.
Last week US champion Ruth Winder became the first female pro racer to complete an Everesting, having ridden the Superflag climb in Boulder, Colorado nearly 15 times.