Pub rac­ers prove they can han­dle their beer (kegs)

Rochdale Observer - - FRONT PAGE - Damon.wilkin­son@men­media.co.uk @Da­monWilkin­son6

IT weighs 50kg, you have to lug it up 1.3miles of moor­land and at the end you don’t even get to drink any of it.

That was the chal­lenge fac­ing the com­peti­tors in the first World Beer Keg Car­ry­ing Cham­pi­onships in Lit­tle­bor­ough on Satur­day.

Four­teen men and two teams took part in the gru­elling event on Black­stone Edge.

It saw them race be­tween the Moor­cock Inn and the White House pub – a climb of 500m – car­ry­ing a Marston’s beer keg filled with wa­ter.

John Hunter won the in­di­vid­ual event in a time of just over 17mins, while staff from Team Pre­ci­sion UK took the honours in team cat­e­gory.

For their ef­forts they were pre­sented with a 5l-keg of Devil’s Back­bone beer.

Or­gan­iser Brian Gum­b­ley, from the Al­ways With a Smile ac­tiv­i­ties group, hopes one day the quirky event will come to ri­val the Gravy Wrestling Cham­pi­onship in Stack­steads or the World Black Pud­ding Throw­ing Cham­pi­onship in Rams­bot­tom.

He said: “There is nowhere else do­ing any­thing like this.

“Hope­fully in four or five years time it will be a mas­sive event and raise loads of money for a lo­cal char­ity.

“The best ex­am­ple is the Gravy Wrestling Cham­pi­onships, which started out in a car park in Wi­gan and now thou­sands of peo­ple go to the Rose n’ Bowl to watch it. This year Sky Sports even turned up.

“We had 14 lu­natics and two teams tak­ing part. The win­ner John Hunter won the coal car­ry­ing cham­pi­onships and he’s been on TV do­ing chal­lenges with the SAS and he says it is the tough­est thing he’s done.

“We couldn’t have asked for a bet­ter event and ev­ery­body got back safely which is the main thing.

“It was well-at­tended and there were quite a few spec­ta­tors out­side the White House cheer­ing ev­ery­body home.” ●●John Hunter cel­e­brates his vic­tory in the World Beer Keg Car­ry­ing Cham­pi­onship with Team Pre­ci­sion UK mem­bers, who won the team ti­tle

Peter Red­ford

●●An­other racer puts his back into it

Peter Red­for

●●Com­peti­tors make their way over the moors

Peter Red­ford

●●There was plenty of sup­port for those tak­ing on the chal­lenge

●●Some rac­ers were dressed to im­press

Peter Red­ford

●●It was an up­hill bat­tle for some

●●Tak­ing a well-earned breather part­way round the course

Peter Red­ford

●●It proved to be a gru­elling event for com­peti­tors

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