HUNDREDS of plucky competitors braved biting winds and even the occasional snow flurry on Sunday to take part in the annual Skipton Triathlon.

More than 550 athletes were cheered on by crowds as they took part in the event, based at Aireville Park.

The event, seen as many triathletes as a warm up for the season, saw competitors complete a 400 metre swim in Craven Leisure Pool, followed by a 22km bike ride out of Skipton and along the A59 up the gruelling climb to West Marton, before dropping down to Thornton-in-Craven and back to Skipton.

Competitors, many of who were taking part in their first triathlon, then finished off with a 5km run around Aireville Park.

Overall winner of the event was Carl Shaw, of the Race Hub Triathlon Club, who finished in one hour and four seconds, and the first woman to finish was was Brit May Tate, of Leeds and Bradford Triathlon Club, who completed the course in 1hr, 8mins and 58secs

The event was organised by Craven District Council for the third year running.

Paul Shevlin, council chief executive, said: “We had a fantastic day with many people taking part in a triathlon for the first time. All the competitors should be very proud of their achievements, particularly given the challenging weather conditions. It was great to see so many smiling faces and some competitive racing too."

He added: "Skipton Triathlon attracts a huge range of athletes every year, from first-timers to elite racers and it’s brilliant to see everyone giving their best efforts. "

And he thanked all the sponsor, supporters and volunteers, for making the event possible.

“Particular thanks to the volunteers from Craven District Council, Craven Energy Triathlon Club, Skipton AC, Friends of Aireville Park and Skipton Cycling Club who showed what we can do when we all pull together as a community," he said.

The event was sponsored by RunRight, Omnis Signs, Craven Barnfield Regeneration Ltd, and Incommunities, and supported by Bizzie Lizzie’s, Harrogate Spa, Keelham Farm Shop, Yorkshire Dales Ice Cream, Juste Nous, Triangle, Thistle Rose Campervan Conversions, Big Bobble Hats, Riders Cycle Centre, Grandma Wild’s, Sportmax, Arla Protein and Birchall Foodservice.

Full results are available online at: