‘I had my records taken away because I was five metres short of one summit’

A legendary climber has had his records taken away because he was five metres short of one summit.

Reinhold Messner was believed to have been the first man to climb the world’s 8,000 metre summits, but a map enthusiast has claimed he hasn’t.

Eberhard Jurgalski said Mr Messner was just five metres short of the peak of Annapurna, in Nepal, when he climbed it in 1985.

He has also claimed, using German space agency imagery, that mountaineers failed to scale three other peaks.

In response to the data, Guiness World Records has stripped Mr Messner of his records.

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Editor-in-Chief Craig Glenday said that for a climb to qualify for a Guinness World Record title “we must insist on a base came to true summit ascent”.

Mr Messner is now listed as a “legacy” holder of the honour and the feat now belongs to American Edmund Viesturs who climbed all 14 peaks in 2005.

Mr Messner is also no longer recognised as the first person to climb all of the peaks, which include Everest, without oxygen.

Following the shock developments, the famous climber has been left outraged by Mr Jurgalski’s findings.

Mr Jurgalski, from Lorrach, Germany, said he read Mr Messner’s report of his Annapurna ascent where he said he could see base camp from the top.

He claimed this would not have been possible if Mr Messner had actually been at the summit.

According to his data, which have taken 10 years for him to complete, only four people have climbed all 14 peaks rather than 44 who claim they have completed the challenge.

Mr Messner has denied Mr Jurgalski’s claims.

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Mr Messner said that he and his teams definitely reached the summit and that Mr Jurgalski is not an expert.

He also said that he believed his name was being used by others to “make themselves important” because they “achieved nothing”.

His comments follow Mr Jurgalski’s controversial 2022 statements. He said: “If someone didn’t reach the top, then they didn’t reach the top.

“If a pop star has 13 number-one hits and one at number two, would you say he’s been at the top of the charts 14 times?”

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