THE sun was shining as thousands of people stepped out into the heat for the 57th Keswick to Barrow this weekend.

Nearly 3,000 people tackled the 40 mile challenge on Saturday May 11, to help raise thousands of pounds for numerous charities and good causes.

The route took participants past the foot of Helvellyn, through the villages of Grasmere and Elterwater then along the edge of Coniston Water.

After a challenging ascent of Kirkby Moor, the route arrives at Dalton-in-Furness and carries on through to the finish line at Hawcoat Park Sports Club in Barrow.

James Prescott finished with the fastest time of 4 hours and 51 minutes, while Sarah Jones grabbed the title of fastest woman with a time of 5 hours and 8 minutes.

The Mayor of Barrow, Cllr Chris Altree, who welcomed runners at the finish line said: “I was invited to come down to the finish line by the organising committee, to meet people, cheer everyone home and support the event.

“It’s an amazing event for the whole of Furness, it lifts everyone up and brings people together, the people who take part and those who turn up in support.

“I’ve done it myself a couple of times, so hats off to anyone who’s taking part in this weather!”

Joe Turner, who placed as third quickest man, took on the course for a second time and said he was happy with a 45 minute personal best but that it was ‘way too hot’.

As the participants move through the course, the waystations are cleared away as the last person passes through.

Brian DeVenny, Ex Chairman of the committee who organise the K2B, has been involved with the event since 1980 and said this year saw the earliest closure of the route through Grasmere.

The crowd cheered extra loud for Nathan Park as he crossed the finish line with his two young daughters in hand.

He said seeing his children, ages seven and four, made finishing the run much easier: “It’s nice knowing someone is there to see you over the finish line, it was tough, the heat was ridiculous.

The girls said they enjoyed running the last stretch with their daddy and were very proud of him.

One of the co-ordinators, Rachael Hales said: “We’ve had a really good start to the day with glorious weather, its dry and sunny, we couldn’t ask for better, although I bet it’s a struggle for those coming over the moor.

“Today is the first time we’ve been back up to pre Covid-19 numbers which is great to see. We’d like to say thank you to our main sponsor, BAE, who we couldn’t do it without.”