The fastest sprint in high heels nearly beats Usain Bolt

Spain - Sprinting legend Usain Bolt (36) needs to watch out, as a new kingpin may be in town. Winner of the world record for the fastest sprint in high heels, Christian Rodríguez is looking to dethrone the king.

There are some remarkably fast people in the world, but in high heels? That's unusual...
There are some remarkably fast people in the world, but in high heels? That's unusual...  © Collage: Screenshot/Twitter/@GWR & IMAGO/Agefotostock

There are some insanely fast people in the world, and some of them want to spin their speed in strange but exciting ways. Who would have thought that the classic 100-meter (approximately 300-foot) sprint would start to be competed in high heels?

The difficulty of such a task becomes more extraordinary when you learn that the new record holder was only a few seconds slower than Usain Bolt.

So who is this lucky legend? Who has achieved a world record so close to Bolt's that he risks dethroning the king? What was the fastest runner's speed in high heels? Let's take a look.

Fastest sprint in high heels

Earlier in June 2023, Christian Roberto López Rodríguez managed to run, while wearing high heels, a distance of 100 meters (around 300 feet) in 12.82 seconds. This extraordinary achievement makes him absurdly close to Usain Bolt's remarkable effort in 2009 and led to Rodríguez being awarded a Guinness World Record on June 23, 2023.

Usain Bolt made history in 2009 when he ran this same distance in only 9.58 seconds during the World Athletics Championships in Berlin. This remarkable achievement is yet to be beaten, but has one caveat: Bolt wasn't wearing high heels! With only three seconds between them, could this high-heeled runner be gunning to usurp the king?

Running in stilettos is no easy task, of course, which is what makes Christian Roberto López Rodríguez's achievement so extraordinary. To be awarded the title of world record holder in this category, the heels had to be at least 2.76 inches high and no more than 0.59 inches wide (so that platform shoes couldn't be worn).

Christian Roberto López Rodríguez attempted the record as a way to prove that Type 1 diabetics don't have to be debilitated by their condition. He suffers from diabetes himself and wanted to use the run as a way to bring hope to many.

It's extremely hard to run in such shoes, and it can be both exhausting and dangerous. One of the biggest risks is that Rodríguez could simply fall over and hurt himself. This all being said, this dude was on a mission to add one more to his already 12-strong collection of world records.

Speaking to Guinness World Records, Rodríguez said, "The preparation was very exhaustive and specific... I find it very challenging to be able to run in high heels at high speed. In Spain, there are races like this, and they have always gone well for me."

Fun fact: Christian Roberto López Rodríguez holds 12 other world records, each of which is impressive in its own right. They are all sprinting-related challenges, including the fastest 100 meters blindfolded, running backward, balancing a baseball bat on a finger, carrying a waiting service tray, in a sack, and more.

Who was the previous fastest runner in high heels?

The previous record holder for the fastest runner in high heels was André Ortolf, who managed to run the same 100-meter distance in 14.02 seconds, also wearing high heels, back in 2019. Despite having been beaten by Rodríguez, Ortolf should still be proud of his achievement - after all, he was beaten by less than a second.

Much like his new competitor, Ortolf is an avid collector of world records. In fact, he holds the title of the youngest person to have held one hundred records at the same time. His 2019 achievement was simply the 57th on his list and one that we're sure he'll try to take back as quickly as possible. Many of his records, though, are also being contested (or have been beaten) by Rodríguez.

An exceptional athlete, André Ortolf might have had his world record beaten, but he's not going to stop trying anytime soon.

The fastest high-heeled sprinter would impress even Usain Bolt

Usain Bolt set the world record for the fastest one-hundred-meter sprint back in 2009 with an insane time of 9.58 seconds. His speed was, when converted into miles, the equivalent of a car driving at an average of 23.35 mph. At his fastest speed, this incredible record holder achieved 27.8 mph. All of these numbers are courtesy of Bolt's entry on the Olympics website.

Seeing as Rodríguez managed that same one-hundred-meter stretch in 12.82 seconds, only about 3 seconds longer than it took Usain Bolt, questions are now being asked whether this crazy record holder could beat Bolt if those heels were removed from his feet!

Cover photo: Collage: Screenshot/Twitter/@GWR & IMAGO/Agefotostock

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