Kristian 'Ultra' Morgan sets a new running record for the South West Coastal Path (SWCP) and now holds the Fastest Known Time (FKT). Sponsored by Bud & Tender®
Kristian ‘Ultra’ Morgan has completed an incredible feat and become the fastest person to run the South West Coastal Path. It is the longest walking path in the UK. It runs 630 miles along the southern and western coasts of the UK, through Dorset, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset. The SWCP has seen several Fastest Known Time (FKT) attempts in recent years.
The previous record was held by Damien Hall at 10 days 15 hours 18 minutes.
Kristian’s record attempt was fully tracked via GPS.
It was a story of ups and downs with a glorious end.
At 3:15 am in the morning, Kristian made his way to the start line with his mother as family support.
“The theory behind the mindset when starting was pure calm and relaxation. We made sure we had time to take everything in.”
Starting in South Haven Point Kristian completed 71.08 miles…but forgot a head touch and ending up borrowing a lantern from some campers!
Kristian doesn’t remember much from day 3 other than the heat. He only had enough energy to cover 57 miles, without recounting events. A passerby on the trail said it was the hottest day on record in Britain. He did however pick up another 3 miles on the record for a 6 mile lead!
Kristian had some friendly support from a hedgehog, enjoyed the views and was still ahead by over 6 miles at this point
Kristian started off the morning gazing up at a cloudless sky full of bright stars. One of the stars broke free and streaked across the sky…what a great start to the day. He settled into his tent after 10pm for another 5-hour sleep. He was averaging 5 hours sleep per night so far. His lead was now 8 miles ahead of the record.
Frustratingly, Kristian pulled his right quadricep muscle on an aggressive downhill section and feared his attempt might be done. He finished the day completing just over 50 miles and was hoping to get an extra hour or so of sleep to rest his quadricep and recovery enough to continue. He was still maintaining a slight lead on Damian.
“Well the issue arrived when I miscalculated when I would reach the next meet point with my mother. I ended up using my iPhone torch and ascending a hill faster than I normally would in order to get back to the meet point to meet my mother and get the head torch. In the process I pulled my right quad. I thought it was game over that night and went to bed not feeling too pleased. Upon waking and losing time the day before I knew I had to do a big 100 mile push to the finish without any sleep on day 10. So starting off with a limp I proceeded to finish the last section with a new way of moving using inspiration from seeing disabled people on my trip in Ethiopia move around with whatever possible means they could. In the end my mindset was ‘don’t think of what you’ve lost’ but ‘think of what you have left’ and it’s got me to the finish.”
Kristian’s quadricep was feeling a bit better, however he did have to adjust his downhill technique and descend sideways. Kristian adapted his mindset, there was to be no giving up and it was at this point he realized he still had enough mobility in his leg for him to carry on. His iron will and determination drove him on, without sleeping he pushed on, turning the final stretch a 100-mile race.
“My sister turned up and ran 40 miles with me through the night section. There were some mishaps with my meet up points that didn’t happen, but we made the best of what time we had and just continued down to the following meeting point. Eventually we got to the last climb where it said minehead 4.5 miles to go; climb right to the very top of one of the biggest climbs and there was another sign that said minehead 5 miles to go. This was a bit of a kick in the teeth, but I took it with a pinch of salt. Then we ran all the way to the finish me and my sister. Where we saw my mother waiting and ringing the cowbell.”
Kristian smashed the SWCP in 10 days 12 hours and 6 minutes!!!
Beating the previous FKT time by 3 hours and 12 minutes.
We spoke to Kristian after the race and this is what he had to say:
“I honestly thought the last few miles would be easy, as 600 down, the rest would be a walk in the park. That wasn’t the case every single first step towards the finish line took everything I had and a little bit more. Upon reaching the finish line I touched the monument and whilst my mother was ringing the cowbell and my sister was cheering and smiling, I felt I had completed what I set out to do and achieved what I had set out to achieve. Feelings of huge relief to be honest ran through my mind and body. To achieve something like this takes more than I had ever imagined and each time there was a block for a low or a barrier we’d pushed through as a team and go through the other side. And the finish line it was the end result.”
A huge congratulations to Kristian from all the team at Bud & Tender®.
Kristian’s next challenge is to set the Fast Know Time (FKT) for the Appalachian Trail in the USA 2021.
This next challenge will see Kristian attempt 2,189 miles in under 40 days!
Funding is needed for his next challenge, he needs a full support team and equipment, please kindly show your support for Kristian through his gofundme page here.