On Monday (April 13) Buster Martin completed the London marathon in a time of approximately ten hours. What made this remarkable was his age. Martin claims to be 101-years-old. If true, this would make him the oldest person ever to complete a marthon. (The former record holder was 98-year-old Dimitrion Yordanidies who completed the Athens marathon in 1976 with a time of 7.5 hours.) But Martin's age has been called into question
Martin says he was born on September 1, 1906. The British National Health Service, however, says he previously told them he was born in 1913, which would make him a mere 94.
The problem is that Martin has no birth certificate because he was born in France and later moved to a British orphanage. So there's no way to verify his exact age. Guinness World Records has refused to list him as the new record holder, insisting they need a birth certificate.
Perhaps Martin actually comes from Vilcabamba
, the Ecuadorian town of very old people. As Vilcabamba demonstrated, the phenomenon of age exaggeration is well known to anthropologists. The problem is that it's very tempting for very old people to add a few more years onto their age, since it's an easy way to get more attention. So a lot of people who are getting close to 100 decide to bump up their age to make themselves older than 100.
in the marathon were a man who dribbled a basketball the entire way, a girl on 4ft stilts, an 80-year-old woman, a blind man, and a team of six Masai warriors who sang traditional songs as they ran in shoes made from tires.