Two brothers in China have broken the world record for the most distance traveled by train in a 24 hour period. Rickly and Richard Wong, from Chinese territory Hong Kong, recently traveled nonstop from Changsha to Hezhou—a distance of 4967.8 km, or 3086.6 miles. The trip took them across the whole land mass of China.
Guinness World Records has officially confirmed the Wongs’ record. It has been recognized as part of Guinness World Records Day, “a global day of record-breaking which this year has the theme ‘Spirit of Adventure,’” according to the Guinness World Records website.
Rickly and Richard explained that inspiration for their journey came from a train timetable they received from their mother when they were children and took the train to travel over school holidays.
“The high-speed railway network in China made traveling effortless,” Rickly, 43, told Guinness World Records. “It is so much quicker compared to the timetable my mother gave to me 30 years ago. And for me, the journey, not destination, matters.”
Rickly’s job as a sales director for the family company means he regularly travels within China as well as to other countries. He said he prefers to travel by train. It was on a trip back to Hong Kong one day that Rickly had an idea.
“Since the speed of China railway is well developed but how can I quantify it?” he recalled thinking.
He looked into the world record for train travel and saw an opportunity. But he said he knew it wouldn’t be easy, explaining that “It’s a combination of being in the right place at the right time. … If one of the trains is late, we can’t finish the record.”
“When we changed trains at Shanghai Hongqiao Railway Station that day, the whole process only took 19 minutes, we have to run from one end of the station to the other to get on the train and took the second security check, and then finally there were only a few minutes left for us to get on the train,” he explained.
According to Guinness, the brothers’ route covered:
Changsha-Nanchang (342 km east)
Nanchang-Jinhua (421 km east)
Jinhua-Shanghai (320 km north east)
Shanghai-JiNan (912 km north)
JiNan-Beijing (406 km north)
Beijing-Guangzhou (2,298 km south)
Guangzhou-Hezhou (261 km north west)