Ski-crazy John blitzes record

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A Queenstown man has blitzed the record for most ski runs in a day on Coronet Peak. 

John Frampton, 58, spent 12 hours zipping down the slopes to clock a massive 76 runs and cover more than 30,000 vertical metres – or 30 kilometres. The previous record sat at 60 runs in a day. 

The company manager says it was physically draining but he reckons he probably could have skied the following day. 

“It was exhausting but not crippling. It wasn’t like I couldn’t walk off the mountain afterwards.” 

Frampton skied from 8am till 8.15pm with just two 20-minute breaks in between for some food. His record will no doubt stand until next season – he set it on the final weekend of night skiing on September 9. 

The toughest moment of his marathon effort came during the transition from daylight to darkness. 

“It’s hard work because your concentration levels have to go up significantly as you adjust from natural light to the artificial light provided for night skiing.” 

Frampton had a go at the record about three weeks prior but says he wasn’t really geared up to do it that day and was just hoping to do a run for every year of his age. That day he notched up about 50 runs. 

“I wasn’t organised. I didn’t get here sharp at 8am, I stopped for a coffee, I stopped for a bit to eat. 

“It wasn’t till I came off the mountain that I realised that I could have a crack at the record and that it was something that was probably quite achievable.” 

The Northern Southland Transport manager, who has skied for about 50 years, can’t recommend any specific training. 

“It’s an accessible achievement for anyone with the time and the inclination to do so. The record will be broken next year quite successfully. 

“I predict that you could easily do 35,000 vertical metres in day – another 10 runs and that would be quite an achievement. But I won’t be the one attempting it.” 

Frampton says he didn’t especially celebrate getting the record. 

“It wasn’t really an achievement that called for a celebration. It was one person’s achievement – it wasn’t as if it was the World Cup or anything.” 

His record came on the same night as the opening Rugby World Cup game featuring the All Blacks against Tonga – so he raced down the mountain to catch the second half.