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Matthias Kyburz Breaks 50KM Treadmill World Record Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic

Swiss orienteering world champion Matthias Kyburz took to the treadmill amidst the coronavirus outbreak, breaking the world record with an official time of 2:56:35. This is after the treadmill world record was broken twice this year by Mario Mendoza and Florian Neuschwander with a time of 2:59:03 and 2:57:25 respectively.

According to Canadian Running, Kyburz is a four-time world champion in orienteering, having won two individual gold medals and two relay championships. He is also a five-time European champion.

He has also had success in running-specific events. The World Athletics website notes that Kyburz has PBs of 14:45 for 5,000m, 29:55 over 10K and 1:08:25 in the half marathon. He ran his 10K PB at the 2015 Swiss 10K championships, where he finished second.

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“I prepared the whole winter [to be in] top shape,” he said in the live video. “Now I’m basically sitting on the top shape but I can’t use it.” This unique challenge was a way to put his hard-earned fitness to use.

Kyburz clocked an average of 3:30 per kilometre over the 50K run. He passed through 20K in 1:10:48, completed a marathon in 2:29:10 and ran another 8K to finish the run in a new 50K world record time of 2:56:35.

The run doubled as a fundraiser for COVID-19 relief in Switzerland with the proceeds going to help individuals and families in Switzerland “who are bearing the brunt of the virus’ health-related, social and economic impacts.”

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