Fiona Outdoors logo My independent guide to the best of Scotland outdoors

Orkney’s ultra runner extraordinare breaks more records

Written by Fiona October 22 2010

William Sichel approaches the finish line of the Royan 48-hour race

Orkney’s very own record-breaking international ultra-distance runner William Sichel is at it again. While competing in the Royan 48-hour race in western France last weekend, 57-year-old Sichel, who lives on the tiny island of Sanday, added two more records to his name.

Despite running alone and without a support crew in France, Sichel recorded a total distance of 199.4 miles, setting new British and Scottish age-group records for a 48-hour road event.

Yesterday, he said:  “This was a learning experience for me as I haven’t done many 48 hour races in my career.  I was pleased, but not satisfied, with my performance and look forward to more attempts at this type of event soon.”

Sichel finished as the 4th man (from 44 starters) in a race won by Switzerland’s Christian Fatton with 235.2 miles, which was also a Swiss national record.  First lady, Julia Fatton, set a German national record of 228.6 miles. (Fantastic achievement Julia!)

The course was difficult with nine sharp bends every 1000 metre lap and also included running through a giant marquee, which housed all the support crew, medical back-up, chip recording equipment and sleeping area.

But weather conditions were good despite a cooling north wind throughout, with the runners experiencing warm sunny weather during the day and dry, cold conditions at night.

Sichel is now set to focus on the Indoor 48 Hour race to be held in Evreux, Normandy, France from December 2 to 4. He’s also  engaged in Project 60@60 in which he is attempting to have set 60 ultra distance records before his 60th birthday on October 1 2013.

* Sichel has set 32 ultra distance records at World, British and Scottish level including age group, classic events and Guinness World Treadmill records.

More Like This


5 fantastic reasons to vIsit Guatemala – and 4 things to do there 


How cold water swimming can help with managing depression


Corbett bagging: Morven, near Ballater


Free beginner’s guide to navigation by Ramblers Scotland


Corbett bagging: Meall Dubh, Glen Moriston


Tips for first time traveller’s guide | Greenbrier WV