Outside Edge (30/05/10)

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The Independent Online

Everest – mountain or molehill? It seems conquering the world's highest peak is child's play these days as Jordan Romero of Big Bear, California became the youngest-ever, aged 13, last week while Sherpa Apa reached the summit for a record 20th time. But former England rugby player Josh Lewsey was not so lucky after he had to abandon his attempt when his oxygen supply froze 500ft from the top. Meanwhile the two youngest round-the-world solo sailors, Mike Perham of Potters Bar (17 when he circumnavigated) and Australian Jessica Watson (who finished on 15 May, three days before her 17th birthday) have become an item. We can expect even younger record-breaking kids soon.


Goals scored by Gerard Garner for Liverpool Boys Under-11s, surpassing Wayne Rooney's record of 72 for the same side in 1996. He even went to the same Croxteth primary school. Fabio's ready-made replacement in case of injury.

Chequered past of the week

Former grand master Anatoly Karpov is being thwarted in his attempt to unseat Kirsan Ilyumzhinov as president of the chess world governing body Fide. They are reported to have rejected a demand from the Kremlin to reinstate Ilyumzhinov, a rather eccentric president of the southern Russian republic of Kalmykia. He has been in charge since 1995, and has spent £40m on building a "Chess City" and once threw politicians out of parliament to host a match. But he likes to appear in public dressed as Genghis Khan on a white charger, and says he has been reincarnated 69 times and was recently abducted by aliens in yellow space suits. Could it be that we are only pawns in their game?

Good week for

Emma Pooley, first British cyclist to win the Tour de l'Aude in France... Glossop North End FC, whose meat and potato pies made by J W Mettrick were voted best in Britain ahead of Celtic's steak and gravy... and Peter Wafford and Martin Pollard, both hit two holes-in-one in a single round, in Chigwell, Essex and Bulthy, Shropshire respectively.

Bad week for

Duncan Keith, Chicago Blackhawks defenceman loses seven teeth against San Jose Sharks in NHL ice hockey play-offs... Nistru Otaci FC, Moldovan footballers paid in used Volkswagen cars rather than wages by president Vasile Traghira... and Peter Williams, of Blackpool's Golden Mile, found guilty of running a hoopla stall which had odds of 2,600-1 stacked against punters.

Flashing blades of the week

Don Wales may have been cutting it fine as he broke the land speed record for a (sit-on) lawn mower. The grandson of Sir Malcolm Campbell reached 87.833mph (7.041mph faster than the previous best) on Pendine Sands in South Wales, the very spot where his grandfather broke the land speed record in his Bluebird in 1924. But unlike Bluebird, Don's mower had to prove that it could cut grass. All he needs is someone quick with the cuttings. He should have been at the Great Shirt Race in Bampton, Oxon yesterday: competitors dressed in nightshirts push each other around in wheelbarrows or similar contraptions, downing pints of beer at every pub along the route. No short cuts allowed.