REPRESENTING Great Britain and rubbing shoulders with the world’s best obstacle course athletes, 47-year-old Simon Riley headed to Essex for the Obstacle Course World Championships.

Simon, who qualified in the 45-49 age group in June, raced against the best of the best from 62 countries.

He completed the 15k race of 100 obstacles in 3.09.54 and finished in the top ten per cent in his category.

He said: “I was really happy with my official time. Competing with the world’s best athletes in my sport is a privilege I’ll never forget.

“Pulling on that GB jersey was like superman and his cape — I felt untouchable, full of pride and adrenaline.”

The obstacles ranged from all out strength tests — carrying 25kg wreck bags for a mile — to scaling a 30ft inverted wall at the very end of the race.

Simon added: “The camaraderie was ever present and the support from spectators was unbelievable.

“It was even more special having the World Championships on British soil, especially as the birth of obstacle racing originated here in the UK.

“Although there where more than 60 countries competing, the majority of the crowd were British, which made for a very vocal atmosphere.”

Simon said the whole event was spectacularly organised with a large event village full of stalls and food tents.

“But like any race, these events wouldn’t happen without the marshals who give up their time to help athletes reach their goals.”