On Sept. 7 (a day after her 32nd birthday), Pippa Middleton completed the Ötillö Swimrun World Championship. The athletic younger sister of Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge, woke up at 4 a.m. to swim 6.1 miles and run 40.3 miles (for a grand total of 47 miles) interspersed between 26 archipelago islands in the Baltic Sea off of Sweden’s eastern coast.
The royal sibling came in 82nd place, crossing the finish line in 13 hours, 4 minutes and 24 seconds with teammate Jon Bartholdson, brother James Middleton, and his teammate James Matthews. She competed in the race to raise money for the Michael Matthews Foundation, set up in honor of James Matthews’ brother who died in a mountain climbing accident.
“It was one of the hardest things I’ve done,” Pippa told People magazine. Less than three months ago she traveled to Kenya and finished her first marathon in 3:56:33.
However, this year’s 10th annual race was especially difficult due to heavy winds and big waves in the Baltic Sea where 50 transitions from water to land took place.
In her post-race interview, Pippa recaps what the toughest parts of the race were for her. “It feels pretty special,” Pippa says exhaustingly between breaths in the video. “Throughout the race, we had doubts about carrying on and ‘How are we going to finish?’ But we made it.”
She even impressed race organizer and founder Michael Lemmel who told People magazine that with the exception of winners Bjorn Englund and Paul Krochak who clocked in at 8 hours, 29 minutes, finishing within 12 hours or finishing at all is quite a feat. There were 20 teams of two who failed to complete the course.
In celebration of her finish, Pippa had a gin and tonic with lime shortly after crossing the finish line.