| A new roller coaster marathon world record has
been set by 48-year-old American university lecturer
The academic daredevil completed a 17-day epic ride
on the Pepsi Max Big One at Blackpool Pleasure Beach
in August 2007.
The 60mph Big One at England's Blackpool Pleasure
Beach is Europe's tallest roller chaster.
"As a kid, I was frightened of roller coasters
but I have learned to love them," Rodriguez admitted.
He clocked up 401 hours and almost 8,000 rides, covering
more than 6,300 miles (10,138km).
During the marathon he was only allowed five minutes
break for every full hour ridden so he could change
clothes, have a shower or enjoy a meal.
Rodriguez, from Brooklyn, New York, was going head
to head with two challengers at Freizeitland Gieselwind
park in Germany, but they dropped out after 36 hours
for medical reasons.
The New Yorker had to eat, drink and sleep on rollercoasters
as part of the challenge.
Rodriguez first broke the record for longest time
spent on a roller coaster in 1977 at the age of just
18, when he stayed on the Cyclone at Coney Island
for 104 hours.
His hero aviator Charles Lindbergh first inspired
him to take on roller coaster marathons. This was
when he heard Lindbergh had told the press "riding
Cyclone was more thrilling than flying in trans-Atlantic
aircraft 'Spirit of St Louis'" after completing
the first ever solo non-stop trans-Atlantic flight.
A complete list of Richard Rodriguez's roller coaster
· 1977 - The Coney Island Cyclone, USA - 104
· 1978 - Swamp Fox, USA - 110 hours
· 1978 - Rebel Yell, USA- 124 hours
· 1979 - Roaring Tiger, USA - 128 hours
· 1979 - Big Dipper, England - 140 hours
· 1979 - Ghost Town Coaster, USA - 150 hours
· 1979 - PNE Flyer, Canada - 168 hours
· 1980 - Florida Hurricane, USA - 172 hours
· 1980 - Big Dipper, England - 209 hours
· 1981 - Super Manege, Canada - 220 hours
· 1982 - Superwirbel, Deutschland - 368 hours
· 1994 - Big Dipper, England - 549 hours
· 1998 - Big Dipper, England - 1000 hours (46
· 2000 - Big Dipper, England - 2000 hours (3
· 2001 - The Boss, USA - 100 days (daytime)
· 2002 - Expedition GeForce, Germany - 104
· 2003 - Expedition GeForce-Superwirbel, Holiday
Park - 194 hours
· 2007 - Pepsi Max Big One/Big Dipper, England
- 401 hours