A GWYNEDD competitor is the best in Britain once again!

Elgan Pugh, from Bala, has been crowned the best lumberjack athlete in the country for the fifth consecutive time.

He triumphed the 2019 STIHL Timbersports British Championship, after breaking his own national record in the final discipline, the hot saw.

Hosted in the picturesque surroundings of Blenheim Palace, as part of BBC Countryfile Live, the championship saw the top 12 lumberjack athletes from all over Britain compete in a head-to-head race against time across six disciplines.

Using an axe, crosscut saw and chainsaw, competitors are awarded maximum points for the fastest time in each discipline - stock saw, underhand chop, single buck, standing block chop, springboard and hot saw.

In an event that saw competitors push themselves to the limit, 16 personal best times were set which kept a packed crowd on the edge of their seats.

While it was Elgan who claimed the top spot, an ecstatic Johnny Lewis came in a close second, reaching the podium for the first time in the process, with Glen Penlington taking third place.

Champion Elgan Pugh said: “To be crowned the STIHL Timbersports British champion is a fantastic feeling and one I am very proud of.

"I have been training intensively for this event and it’s great to see that it all paid off in the end.”

Spike Milton, STIHL Timbersports global sports director, said: “The British Timbersports Championship pushes athletes to a new level of performance and this year was no different, with the competitors showcasing the skill and technique required to compete on the biggest British stage.

"Each athlete has completed a rigorous training programme in preparation for this event and this was clear to see in what was an action packed and stellar British Timbersports Championship.

“We now look forward to the STIHL Timbersports World Championship in Prague, where we have the difficult decision of choosing Team GB representatives from this great pool of talent.”