The Beast bares its teeth at Melton runners

Runners face around 40 obstacles on the five-mile course Picture: Craig Johnson EMN-170903-133707002

Runners face around 40 obstacles on the five-mile course Picture: Craig Johnson EMN-170903-133707002

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Heavy rain and strong winds added an extra layer of difficulty as The Beast trail race returned to Aylesford Equine Cross Country course.

A total of 73 runners cleared the 40-plus obstacles, water wades and sapping hills to finish the five-mile course, with a further 58 completing two punishing laps.

Water wade and pond crossings also feature Picture: Craig Johnson EMN-170903-133652002

Water wade and pond crossings also feature Picture: Craig Johnson EMN-170903-133652002

Ian Walsh was first runner home over the single lap, posting an impressive 36min 12secs and pipping runner-up jack Cornwell by just seven seconds.

Lee Quinn completed the top three about three minutes later, and Lynne Stockton was first lady home in 48.20.

Adam Jackson was the clear winner of the double challenge, clocking 1hr 13min 02secs, more than five minutes clear of Melton’s Paul Ravenscroft (1.18.31) with Thomas Fincham in third (1.21.35).

Sonya Campbell was the leading lady over 10 miles, crossing the line in 1.29.03.

Paul said: “The conditions were really muddy, the water obstacles were very high and the weather was terrible, but everyone had a smile on their face at least at the end, if not during.

“I do a few obstacle races, but this is the best challenge and something a bit different to road races.”

The biannual race returns to Aylesford with the Winter Beast on Sunday, November 12.