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Last Updated: Thursday, 30 June, 2005, 10:50 GMT 11:50 UK
Life begins at 90
By Mark Ashenden
BBC Sport

FAUJA SINGH'S STATS
Fauja Singh looking to break eight world records
Born: 1 April 1911 in India
Former occupation: Farmer
Running career: Rediscovered at age of 81
Diet: Ginger curry
Marathons: London (5), Toronto (1), New York (1)
Marathon debut: London, 2000 aged 89
London marathon pb: 6h 2m

It's just six years until the Queen's telegram lands on your mat congratulating you on your 100th birthday.

You're taking it easy, right? Slippers on, trips to the coast with a blanket on your lap and a short shuffle to the newsagent's for your Werther's Originals the closest you get to exercise.

Not if you're Fauja Singh - who can regularly be spotted flying down the streets of Essex in his spikes.

At 94, he's run seven marathons (five in London), countless half-marathons and was recently part of the world's oldest marathon team in Edinburgh.

Fauja's jogging skills were developed on an Indian farm in Punjab, and then at the magical age of 81, when he moved to the UK, his love for the sport became more "serious".

Next up? He set his sights on being a record breaker.

And Asafa Powell might have to watch his back. The Jamaican may have the new 100m record, but Fauja's now grabbed a whole load of new ones.

London's Mile End Park Stadium played host to the great man attempting to set world bests for men over 90.

The event was all in aid of charity and promoting the London 2012 Olympic bid.

And Fauja came up with five new records in 94 incredible minutes.

So any secrets to fitness? Fauja's training regime includes a daily eight-mile walk and run, no smoking or drinking, plenty of smiling and lashings of ginger curry.

100m WORLD RECORDS BY AGE
All: 9.77secs Asafa Powell
35-39: 10.03s Linford Christie
90-94: 18.08s Kozo Haraguchi
95-99: 22.04s Kozo Haraguchi

The pounding pensioner is already a superstar. Last year Adidas signed up Fauja alongside David Beckham and Jonny Wilkinson as part of its 'Impossible is nothing' campaign.

And next on the list?

More marathons - and coach Harminder Singh is trying to set up a showdown between Fauja and Japan's Kozo Haraguchi - the new 100m world record holder for the 95-99 age group.

Expect some serious fireworks on the starting line.

So, having only run seriously for the last 13 years, when does Fauja think he'll trade in his spikes for a zimmer frame?

"When I die!" he laughs.

So at least another 50 years, then.




SEE ALSO
Powell pledges to run even faster
14 Jun 05 |  Athletics
Powell breaks world 100m record
14 Jun 05 |  Athletics
Eriksson joins London 2012 trip
27 Jun 05 |  Olympics 2012
Singh tunes up for record
07 Apr 04 |  Athletics


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