OVER 400 youngsters from schools all around Welshpool took part in the World Marathon Challenge running as far and as fast as they could in just over two hours and 15 minutes.

The event was staged to coincide with the Queen’s Baton Relay which arrived at Welshpool High School playing fields during the afternoon.

The annual challenge for schools is to run a marathon distance of 26 and a bit miles, to try and beat the record of 2:02:57 set by Dennis Kimetto at the Berlin marathon, in 2014.

But in Welshpool the aim was to run as far as possible in the time it took international marathon runner and Commonwealth Games contender, Andy Davies, from Forden, to complete the London marathon.

His time was two hours, 15 minutes and 11 seconds.

A joint team made up of pupils from Montgomery Church in Wales School and Leighton County Primary School, won the event, covering just over 24 miles in the allotted two hours, 15 minutes and 11 seconds.

Montgomery school teacher Emma Regan said: “It was a great joint effort by the school pupils.

“the teams were organised by Powys Sport and they ran as far as they could in relay for the time that Andy Davies took to complete his marathon.

“Then they joined Andy and got to run with him and the baton which is a once in a lifetime experience.”

Welshpool High School PE teacher Wendy Langford who helped organise the day, said: “Usually the challenge is done by High School children so the winners did very well getting so close to completing a marathon distance in Andy’s time.

“It goes to show how fast he must have run on that day.”

Mayor of Welshpool Cllr Stephen Kaye who gave out medals to all the participants, said: “Everything went very smoothly, I think they all thoroughly enjoyed the challenge.”

Pictures by Phil Blagg. To order call 01938 553354