End to End 2016: Ben Thomas claims hat-trick despite 'massive head wind'

End to End
The riders had to cope with a strong head wind throughout the event on the Isle of Man.

Ben Thomas won the Manx End to End Mountain Bike Challenge for a third consecutive year in difficult windy conditions on Sunday.

The 27-year-old from Windlesham completed the 46-mile (75km) course in three hours, 12 minutes and 23 seconds.

He finished 53 seconds ahead of local rider Nick Corlett, with Elliot Baxter 26 seconds further back in third after a race-long battle between the three.

Thomas' time was eight minutes slower on his winning time from last year.

He said: "I am really pleased. It is one of the main events that we target in the UK. We love coming back here each year and it is great to take the win.

End to End
Riders tackle a variety of terrain during the event and climb more than 1,500 metres.

"Anything can happen on this course - it is so rough and the weather always has an influence. The head wind today was massive."

Anke Dannowski from Dresden was the leading female rider, 53rd overall, and despite the conditions, dipped under four hours with a time of 3:59.17.

She finished more than 18 minutes ahead of Cheri Mills, with Kathryn Priest completing the top three.

More than 700 competitors started the race, which runs from the Point of Ayre to Cregneash, with 651 completing the full distance.

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