10 unusual Irish world records


After Carlow man Ed Cahill set the world record for the most toothpicks in a beard in October 2012, it got us thinking – what other world records does Ireland hold?

We don't have the biggest military, or the largest skyscrapers, but it turns out we do have a fair sense of humour and a willingness to try things out!



1. Longest Marathon Playing Guitar

Dave Browne decided he'd play the guitar continuously for 42 hours straight and set a world record. Only when he began to research it, it turns out that he had to play for 113 hours straight.

The rules included five minutes rest per hour of playing, no more than 30 seconds between songs, and a rule that banned repeating a song within four hours of playing it.

The video above shows Dave (on the right) jamming away, amazingly still standing, as he breaks the 113-hour record at The Temple Bar pub in Dublin. But he wasn't quite done – he rocked on to a total of 114 hours, 6 minutes and 30 seconds!

Source Guinness World Records

2. Most Vertical Feet run in 24 hours

Croagh Patrick

To the rest of us, that's running up and down. If you were to add all that vertical height together, you'd be just under the Armstrong limit - the point at which the human body can no longer survive the lack of atmosphere.

So that's a lot of vertical feet, and was achieved by a team of 11 members, who ran 59,337 ft 7 in up and down Croagh Patrick, Co Mayo, in June 2011.


3. Youngest Person to Visit the North Pole

Jaimie Donovan was 8 years old when she travelled to the North Pole from Galway, with her family, to the North Pole Marathon. She didn't take part herself, but her father, Richard Donovan, is an endurance athlete. In doing so, she equalled the record she now shares with Alicia Hempleman-Adams from the UK.


4. Largest gathering of people dressed as Wally

Image: Tristran Reville

This happened. The bizarre record for most people dressed as Wally, or 'Waldo' in the US, was achieved in June 2011 as part of the Street Performance World Championships.

A whopping 3,657 people donned a woolly bobble cap and stripey jumper for the day, and The Irish Times newspaper took an ultra-high-res image of the crowd to turn the occasion in to a real 'Where's Wally' search.


5. Most Tennis serves in one hour

Image: Guinness World Records

On 18 September 2011, Irishman Sean Rooney performed 1,158 tennis serves in one hour – that's 19 a minute, or one about every three seconds!

The record was set at the Co Wicklow Lawn Tennis Club in Bray.


6. Longest Journey with a Fridge

Tony Hawks – an English comedian, not the professional skateboarder – once saw, on a trip to Ireland, a man trying to hitch a lift with a fridge. Struck by the madness of the image, he would later tell his friend (over several drinks) that Ireland was 'a magical place' where getting a lift with a fridge was possible.

His friend didn't believe him, and so the bet was made: to travel the circumference of Ireland, hitch-hiking with a fridge.

That journey took in 1,650km in a month, and became the subject of Hawks' first book, the clearly-titled 'Round Ireland with a Fridge', which was even turned into a film.

He also won GB£100 for the bet.


7. Oldest Moon Map