LOCAL athletes competed to become Berkshire’s strongest man and woman, thanks to a Maidenhead weightlifting club.

Organised by the Red Beard Barbell Club, based at Moor Farm, Holyport, the event saw competitors battle it out in its first ever competition, Berkshire’s Strongest.

The contest saw 60 athletes take part in five different categories at the Berkshire College of Agriculture, at Hall Place, Burchetts Green Road, in Maidenhead on July 16.

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The categories included Men’s Novice, Women’s Novice, Men’s Inters, Women’s Inters, and Men’s Opens.

Charlie Knight, head coach at Red Beard Barbell Club, said the competition went well.

“It was really good and it was great to have 26 women competing and there was a good mix of athletes in each category,” he said.

“It was a lot of stress putting it together with lots going on behind the scenes but the aim of the event was all about giving these athletes exposure and putting weightlifting on the map locally.

“We also really want to increase awareness of the sport and our goal is to grow it and encourage more women in particular to take on the sport.”