A 100-year-old runner became the first centenarian and, therefore, oldest person to complete a marathon when he finished the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon on Sunday. And, ironically, Fauja Singh was the last person to finish the race.
Singh, who is a British citizen, finished the race just before 6 p.m. ET in a dashing time of 8 hours, 11 minutes and 5.9 seconds, according to CBC News.
He's absolutely overjoyed, his coach and translator, Harmander Singh, told CBC News. Singh speaks only Punjabi.
He's achieved his life-long wish.
Harmander Singh said that Fauja Singh had targeted nine hours as his finish-time goal. He definitely exceeded that goal, but the event workers were already taking down the marathon barricades and sponsor banners when he came up to the finish line.
No matter. The media was there to greet the man who, apparently, is affectionately known as the Turbaned Tornado.
According to the race's Web site, Singh took up running at the ripe old age of 89. He set a record for the 90-plus age group in 2003, when he finished the Toronto marathon in 5 hours, 40 minutes and 4 seconds. Fallen off a bit since then, haven't you, Fauja?
Singh jogs or walks an average of eight to 10 miles per day. And he plans to keep running for what he considers a simple reason.
I will carry on running, he told the marathon's Web site, as it is keeping me alive.
The Toronto marathon partnered with the Guinness World Records for the event, making Singh's accomplishments really official. Other records up for grabs included Fastest Mascot, Fastest vegetable, Fastest Parent and Child and Fastest Television Character.
Currently, a Carrot and Captain James Kirk respectively hold the second and fourth of those records. No word if it actually happened, but it should be fully expected that a Pea and Spock challenged those records Sunday.
As for Singh, he will participate in the torch relay for the 2012 Olympics in London. And he plans to keep running and trying to break records, all of which he does for charity.
Singh's accomplishments come on the heels of a Chicago Marathon finish by Amber Miller, who, by the way, was 38 weeks and five days pregnant. Shortly after the race, she gave birth to her daughter June, who weighed 7 pounds and 13 ounces.
So, next time you think you can't run a marathon, think of the 38-week-pregnant women and centenarians that are doing it. And then dress up as a carrot so no one knows it was you that couldn't finish the marathon.