AN RAF man has won the annual World Coal Carrying Championships.

Chris McKie, a 35-year- old PT instructor in the RAF, was the convincing winner of the traditional Yorkshire race, staged yesterday at Gawthorpe, near Ossett.

He beat seven times winner John Hunter, of Scarborough, by 16 seconds, winning in a time of four minutes 19 seconds.

Competitors have to carry a 50kg sack of coal over a mile-long course around the village.

The event has been running since the early 1960s and past winners include Terry Lyons and Steve Jones, both of Meltham.

The women's race was won by teacher Vicki Gibson, of Northampton, for the second year.

In all there were 30 men and six women taking part.