Are four legs better than two?

A horse crosses the ford in front of the runners
The answer is yes, especially when it comes to one of Wales’ most bizarre annual sporting events – Man versus Horse. Held at Llanwrtyd Wells, Wales, the event will celebrate its 35th birthday in June. In 2013 it attracted a record number of entrants who took on the gruelling 24 mile course up hills, through forests, moorland and open countryside.

I bet the horse won…

Well you wouldn’t be wrong! The 2013 rosette went to horse-rider Beti Gordon who finished in an impressive 2 hours and 18 minutes. That was 28 minutes quicker than the closest runner! 

Who came up with such an event?

In 1980 Gordon Green, then the owner of the Neuadd Arms Hotel, overheard a discussion between two men in his bar. They were debating whether over a significant distance a man was equal to a horse. Ever the entrepreneur, Gordon decided to put it to the test. It wasn’t until the 25th anniversary of the event that Huw Lobb became the first two-legged winner, only to be followed two years later by 2 human competitors outpacing the first equine competitor by a full 11 minutes! Man versus Horse has grown in reputation year on year ever since.

How to enter

The next race is on the 13 June 2015, with runner entries still open. Want a taste of the event but not 24 miles of tough terrain? Relay teams of 3 people can enter, running around 7 miles each. Every participant, solo or relay, is welcomed in to the Neuadd Arms the night before the race for the traditional pasta party. Runners and riders taking on the 2013 route can be seen on the events Facebook page.

A centre for off-the-wall sporting events

Man versus horse isn’t the only sport which this tiny Mid Wales town is famous for. For the past 37 years it’s also hosted the World Bog Snorkelling Championship. 2013 was also the first year it stages the alternative Olympics – get in line to compete in the space hopper racing or worm charming championship!
Running events

Enter amazing events like the Virgin Money London Marathon for Scope.

Contact the events team

For help or to ask a question, email or call 020 7619 7270.