Horton gives men a run for their money in Bristol event
CITY athlete Maddie Horton had a perfect solution when she ran out of women to race against – she took on the men instead.
Horton, a former England athlete turned mountain-biker, showed her paces at the RunRider in Bristol.
Athletes had to complete a 10km road run, a 40km mountain bike ride and a further leg-busting 5km run.
Horton, who was defending women's champion, started well and by the end of three-hour event, she had left her nearest woman challenger 35 minutes behind her.
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The city cyclist, who once flirted on the periphery of the Great Britain Olympic team, was left with trying to take on the male competitors and very nearly succeeded.
Horton finished a very creditable seventh overall, as well as retaining her women's title.
Her husband and fellow athlete Jay was also defending his veterans' title in the men's event at the race.
But he found it tough going in a start-to-finish battle against some high-quality athletes.
Horton, however, recorded a two hour, 47 minute finishing time, which was enough to give him second overall place and for him to keep his veterans' title.
Meanwhile, Plymouth rider Gary Andrews was unlucky not to medal in the traditional mountain bike race season closer at Ashton Court, Bristol.
Andrews, from city club Certini, was taking part in an eight-hour enduro race as part of a team representing the South West.
Andrews and his colleagues had to get round as many laps of the 9km course as they could within eight hours.
Competitors were faced with appalling conditions which turned the normally dry track into a quagmire.
The South West team's inexperience in racing together showed in some clumsy baton handovers, which probably cost them a podium place.
The team eventually finished in fourth place.