Fastest "zorb" ride set by New Zealanders

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Saturday, November 11, 2006

File photo of a Zorb in action

The world records for longest Zorb ride and fastest Zorb ride were both broken in New Zealand, Thursday.

The record was set first by Steve Camp, who rolled 570 metres in a Zorb, twice the previous record. Keith Kolver then set the speed record, rolling 52 kilometres per hour (32 miles per hour); a police officer from the local force tracked the speed of the Zorb. Both records were set on hills at Matapara Farm near Rotorua.

The records were verified by Angie Willocks, an adjudicator for Guinness.

A Zorb is a plastic ball, three metres across. Participants roll down slopes inside of them, somewhat like hamster balls. The makers of the Zorb product introduce the experience as being "Where all your dreams are realized (as long as you dream of rolling down a hill inside a giant plastic ball)."

As he climbed out of the Zorb, Camp commented "That was one helluva awesome ride."

Rolver exclaimed "WOW! What an incredible experience! Man that was so fast... water every where and an unbelievable sensation of speed!"

According to the online encyclopedia Wikipedia, "the activity has been shown in episodes of Wildboyz, Celebrity Fit Club, Road Rules, The Amazing Race, and Globe Trekker, as well as the Jackie Chan film Armour of God II: Operation Condor."

The records were part of worldwide attempts, to commemmorate the second annual Guinness World Records Day. Guinness officials were on hand to monitor attempts in Australia, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, USA, China, Sweden, Norway, Italy, Germany and France.