(ThePoles.com/story edited Dec 19) "He's going to overtake me in a few days," record holder Hannah McKeand told ExWeb a few days back about American Todd Carmichael.
She had previously already sent an email of support to another skier chasing her tracks, UK Mark Langridge who aborted his plan to also turn around at the South Pole and ski back without the use of kites. [Ed note Dec. 19, 2008 correction: Due to Marks heavier load, he is not attempting to beat the South Pole speed record.]
What a difference in support and sportsmanship compared to Hannah's own speed record on Antarctica: while disheartened by serious snow conditions, previous record holders emailed Hannah on the ice questioning her starting point (which was correct).
Well Hannah was right about Todd who is 2.9NM ahead as of today, on day 35. This equals a skiing distance of about 1.5 hours. Todd is finding the soft snow very difficult right now though, so it's going to be close! Hannah made it in 39 days, 10 hours and 33 min, almost 2 days faster than the previous record of 41 days 8 hours and 14 min.
And watch out also for Veteran Arctic explorer Richard Weber leading fellow Canadians and long distant runners Ray Zahab and Kevin Vallely on an equally unsupported attempt from Hercules Inlet to the South Pole!
Todd attempts to be the first American to cross Antarctica to the South Pole - alone, on foot and with no assistance - and a South Pole speed record.
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