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Record breaker

By Sgt. William Wilczewski
First published in
SFOR Informer #81, February 16, 2000


Ilidza - SFOR is represented by 35 different nations from all around the globe - all of them having their own identities and unique qualities. But one soldier who may stand out from the rest is German 1st Lt Christian Fluhr of the Allied Military Intelligence Battalion in Ilidza. Prior to arriving in Theatre Jan. 21, he unofficially broke two Guinness Book world skiing records Dec. 15-18 in Obertauern, Austria. Fluhr, an Army veteran of eight years, broke the old skiing duration record of 60 hours, 56 minutes with a 68-hour, 23-minute performance. During the same attempt, he also broke the distance/altitude record of 107 km, 73 meters by consistently skiing for 137 km, 34 meters, stopping only to use the toilet and ride the lifts back up to the top of the mountain. Recalling the first day of the three-day affair, Fluhr said, "It was a snowy day - not so good weather. It was very windy. Most of the locals didn't think I could break the record. And after breaking the record, what did he do?

"The next day I woke up after six hours of sleep and went skiing. I can't get enough." Documentation of his feat, which was verified by three men on his team, was sent to The Guinness Book of World Records Jan. 24. Although he is not expecting a formal reply, he is eagerly awaiting the next edition of the book to come out in the fall of 2001. At age 24, he has been a regular on the slopes for 22 years and is a ski section leader with the 1st Mountain Division in Bavaria. "My father started me at a very early age," he said, "and I've enjoyed it ever since." At age six he attended a ski school and was instructed by a 1936 Olympic skiing medalist. He has competed and been placed in many national and international events, and has his eye on the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah (USA), hoping to compete in downhill speed events. Currently, Fluhr, who recorded 186 days of skiing last year, is eagerly awaiting the shipment of his equipment to Bosnia and Hercegovina. "I plan to do a little skiing while I'm here. The landscapes here are very beautiful and I'm sure the slopes are very challenging," he said with a smile referring to the ranges used for the 1984 Olympics. "In the future, I think this place could be a great ski area." Also in the future he plans on beating his own record. "I'm hoping to get back to Obertauern in December and try to do 100 hours. I think I will make it, because after this year's attempt I was not very fatigued because it takes a minute and 30 seconds to run down and seven and a half minutes to go up," he said with smile. Fluhr's tour is slated to end July 21 and he plans to organise a six-week ski trip to Las Lenas, South America in early August. As he said "I cant get enough."

Related link:
Nations of SFOR: Germany