Tube 17 - The One Before Olympia Changes

With the impending change to services at Olympia, it became imperative that we attempted it at least one more time, before it came almost impossible to do.

We had an abortive attempt the week before on Friday 2nd December which should have been this attempt (17), instead we did it on the last possible day before the service changed, on Friday 9th December.

Some of key points during the day were:

Again I was by myself, with Chris as my main backup/supply/point man,

It went wrong early on again as it so often does when the Piccadilly ran slow, and we missed our District Line connection.

Amazingly, we made this back when Chris with a little door holding, made me make a train at Richmond which I never thought I was going to get. What helped is that the trains where all missed up here and the Overground trains were using one of the District platforms, and a District train was using one of the the Oveground platforms .. confusing!

The Olympia service ran late (bless it, on its very last day) and cost us a connection that I have made twice on test days, but never on a real challenge day.

The Central Line then broke down, and after some nifty on-the-fly decisions and re-routing, we calculated that I was about 5 minutes off/down world record pace.

This meant that I was able to get the Overground service up between Walthamstow/Leytonstone which I normally never do on a challenge.

The indicator at Walthamstow lied anyway, and the 'Next train out..' was wrong, as I sat on one train and then heard/watched the train on the other platform leave first! So annoying.

The top of the Circle Line through Farringon/Barbican ran slowly, made us miss out connection which had a knock on effect and put us twenty minutes down. One train running two minutes late really can put you twenty minutes down on a challenge.

At Russell Square where they were advertising 'A Good Service' on the Piccadilly Line and all other lines, I just missed a train by seconds .. and the board said 3 minutes for the next one. So I timed it, and it really sook six and a half minutes to arrives. TfL/LU lie to passengers about trains runnings, and this proves it.

So we just had out time eroded and slowly eroded away until we were on the District Line heading east towards Upminster where we had a healthy two minutes to make a connection. Of course, the train crawled along and did the thing where it stopped outside completely for a minute 'Waiting for a platform to come free', and we missed our C2C train back out.

It's like .. it's a surprise to them that a train is approaching and a platform is going to be needed for it. There are three platforms at Upminster for District trains, and when we pulled in, we occupied the last free one (there were two other trains already there). No other train left whilst we has been waiting outside, so why did we wait? Why didn't we just go straight into the free platform, with a chance of making our connection?

That was about 8pm, and we knew then that we weren't going to finish. It was a very dark and cold December day, so it became time to stop,

Tube 17 stats

Stations visited: 202/270
Start time: 06:49.37 Finish time: 19:57.55
Time taken: 13 hours, 8 minutes, 18 seconds
Projected time if completed all 270:
18 hours, 15 minutes.
Number of people: 1
Support team: Several

Other attempts:

Tube 1 | Tube 2 | Tube 3 | Tube 4 | Tube 5 | Tube 6 | Tube 7 (World Record)
Tube 8 | Tube 9 (Tube Relief) | Tube 10 | Tube 11 | Tube 12 | Tube 13 | Tube 14 | Tube 15 | Tube 16 | Tube 17 | Tube 18 | Tube 19 | Tube 20 | Tube 21 | Tube 22 | Tube 23 | Tube 24 | Tube 25 (Second World Record)



Tube 17

9th December 2011

The Tube Challenge

The challenge is to travel round all the stations on the London Underground (currently 270 of them) in the fastest time possible. This is a recognised and established world record, that has proper rules and regulations laid down by Guinness World Records. People have been competing for this since 1959.

I'm a two-times World Record Holder for completing this challenge the first time held between 2004-2006, and then again between 2013-2015.

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