Leeds & West Yorkshire

World Coal Carrying Championships 2017 draws big crowds

Gabrielle Oldroyd Image copyright Mark Gledhill
Image caption Gabrielle Oldroyd said competing in the race was the "craziest thing" she had ever done

A transplantee described crossing the finish line in the World Coal Carrying Championships a "big achievement".

Gabrielle Oldroyd, 19, hauled a sack of coal through the streets of Gawthorpe, West Yorkshire, along with dozens of other competitors.

Ms Oldroyd, who has had a kidney transplant, took on the 1,012m course from the Royal Oak pub to the maypole on the village green.

The Easter event was run for the 54th time on Bank Holiday Monday.

Image copyright PA
Image caption The race has been held in West Yorkshire since 1963

Thousands gathered to watch the traditional race, where men carry 50kg sacks of coal and women carry 20kg.

Ms Oldroyd, who lives locally, said: "To say I had a kidney transplant in 2008, to come and do this is probably the craziest thing I've ever done, but I'm so glad I've done it.

"To anyone out there with any health issues or anything, it just proves it can be done if you put your mind to it and I've proved that today.

"I was determined to finish it and have a go.

"I just knew that I was going to give all I've got and that's what I've done. It's a big achievement."

Image copyright AFP/Getty
Image caption More than 200 people took part in the 2017 event

Jenny Mustan clocked the fastest time by finishing in 4m 30s, with the men's race won by Andrew Corrigan with a time of 4m 31s.

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