New Guinness World Records

The ninth annual Guinness World Records Day has taken place in Sydney and featured a collection of suitably absurd human endeavours.

Chayne Hultgren stole the headlines for swallowing three swords while standing at the bottom of a swimming pool. As with most of these records, whether or not he was the first (and last) person to ever attempt such madness remains unclear.

Although the event was based in Sydney, thousands of people all over the world joined in the fun.

Kenichi Ito in Japan managed to set a new world record by completing the 100-metre sprint in 16.87 seconds. Admittedly that is more than seven seconds slower than Usain Bolt’s best effort. But Bolt wasn’t running on all fours. Ito claims his running/crawling technique has taken nine years to perfect and is based on the movement of the African Patas monkey. Obviously.

Helge Johansen, based in Norway, continued knitting his epic scarf, which has been 30 years in the making and now stretches out for more than 4.5 kilometres. In Chicago, the world’s largest ever pillow fight took place at a concert by Swedish DJs Dada Life.

Not all years have been as successful. Our favourite World Record fail took place in 2008 in Tehran, Iran, where over 1,000 cooks were attempting to make the world’s longest ever sandwich. The goal was 1,500 metres, but the attempt was thwarted when hungry onlookers couldn’t resist the temptation and started tucking in before the official measurements could take place.

What’s the most bizarre world record you’ve heard about?