Horse beats man to win race but just by half a minute!

June 15th, 2008 - 4:58 pm ICT by ANI  

London, June 15 (ANI): The annual Horse vs Man race, one of the worlds most bizarre sporting contests, saw a horse beating a man - but only by half a minute.

After powering over 22 miles, three mountains and two rivers, John McFarlane came in a close second in the Man Versus Horse race at Llanwrtyd Wells in Wales.

Though McFarlane, a runner with Thames Hare and Hounds athletics club in London, finished 30 seconds behind the winner, a horse called Dukes Touch of Fun, he beat 45 other horses and more than 300 runners.

Its good to have won the human race, but frustrating for it to be that close and to be beaten right at the end. The horses can gallop away on the flat, but you can get an advantage on the hills, TimesOnline quoted McFarlane, 35, a junior doctor from Wimbledon, southwest London, as saying.

The quest to find out which is faster over open country man or horse originally took shape in a pub.

The first event was held after Gordon Green, then landlord at the Neuadd Arms in Llanwrtyd Wells, overheard a discussion whether a man could ever match or even beat a horse in a cross-country race.

The race route heads northeast out of the town square on a metalled road but soon turns onto hillside and rough forest tracks.

The competitors have to cross two rivers and climb more than 3,000ft. The runners start out 15 minutes before the horses to avoid any accidents at the beginning but all the competitors are running against the clock.

As the paths narrow and overhanging tree branches crowd in on the competitors, the horse can begin to slow. Steep and often rocky descents can also hamper their progress. The highest peak of the race is 1,640ft. (ANI)

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