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New York


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New York   March 30, 2012


From the New York Times March 30, 2012, 10:45 am

Riding the Subway, From A to Z in 22:52:35 or Bust



Adham Fisher, left, and Andrew James, in the Times Square subway station where they were preparing for their attempt to break the record for traveling the entire subway system in the shortest amount of time.Michael Appleton for The New York TimesAdham Fisher, right, and Andrew James, in the Times Square subway station where they were preparing for their attempt to break the record for traveling the entire subway system in the shortest amount of time.

It's an endeavor many train enthusiasts have dreamed about trying: ride every inch of a transportation network, traversing every subway line and station - and do it all, not in a week or a month, but in a day.

This week, Adham Fisher, 27, of Leicester, England, who manages camp sites during Formula One races, and his friend Andy James, a 36-year-old pharmacist from Bournemouth, England, began on-the-scene research into their attempt next Wednesday to break the Guinness World Record for riding the entire New York City subway system.

Both visitors are well versed in the competitive subway-riding world. Mr. Fisher established the record for riding Chicago's rail network in 9 hours 30 minutes 59 seconds. Mr. James still holds the record for riding the entire London Underground in 16 hours 29 minutes 13 seconds.

But the task ahead of them in New York is more daunting. In 2009, two New Yorkers, Matthew Ferrisi and Chris Solarz, set the Guinness record for covering the city's 468 subway stations in 22 hours 52 minutes 36 seconds; they credited a computer program that they devised. The previous record, set in 2006, was 24 hours 54 minutes. Mr. Ferrisi, who has since moved to New Hampshire, said he would not mind trying again, but most likely at a somewhat more leisurely pace. During the nearly 23-hour trip, he said he had time only for two cups of coffee. He was too busy chronicling his journey for Guinness, which involved taking time-stamped photographs of every station; getting a passenger to sign off each station they passed through; filming their journey by video; and live blogging part of the trip. He suspects his record will be hard to top because the subway system has had so many service cuts, lengthening waiting times for trains. "It was exhausting," said Mr. Ferrisi, who is now trying to claim other records, like visiting as many countries as possible by rail in 24 hours. "This is not a record I think we're going to come back and reclaim."


From the New York Times April 6, 2012, 12:47 pm

With a 23-Hour Subway Ride, Falling Short of the Record


In the end, the Brits did not conquer the New York City subway system.

On Thursday, Adham Fisher, 27, of Leicester, England, who once held the record for the fastest ride of the entire Chicago subway system, and his friend Andy James, 36, set out to break the record for riding to all 468 New York City subway stations.

Though Mr. James dropped out because of a leg injury, Mr. Fisher completed the circuit in less than a day: 23 hours, 11 minutes and 24 seconds. But his time was 18:48 short of the Guinness world record of 22:52:36.

Apparently undaunted, Mr. Fisher is scheduled to head to Chicago next to try and reclaim the title of fastest subway rider there.

And he said he planned to return to New York someday.

"I certainly want to try again," he wrote. "To be within 19 minutes of the record on a first full go is rather good."