The face of a winner! World Gurning Championship sees winner claim the top title for a record-breaking 18th time – as comedians Josh Widdicombe and Nish Kumar make surprise appearance at grotesque face-pulling competition
- The World Gurning Championship was held this weekend in Egremont, Cumbria
- Tommy Mattison broke a world record by winning the contest for the 18th time
A face-pulling champion has said he is ‘chuffed to bits’ after winning the World Gurning Championship for a record-breaking 18th time.
Tommy Mattinson stormed to victory in the men’s category, as he broke the world record for winning the centuries-old contest the most times.
The event which sees contestants pull grotesque faces while wearing horse collars is held in the town’s market hall and is believed to have first been established in 1267.
The experienced gurner also beat top comedians Josh Widdcombe and Nish Kumar by winning the competition at the Crab Fair in Egremont, Cumbria.
Kumar and Widdicombe made a surprise appearance at the event as they are believed to be touring the UK for a TV show that sees them try out being local news reporters.
Tommy Mattison (pictured) won the World Gurning Championship for a record breaking 18th time in a row
Tommy Mattison (pictured) said he was ‘chuffed to bits’ after winning to contest in Cumbria
Adrian Zivelonghi took part in the contest that is believed to have run since 1267
Ged Eccles entered the competition that sees contestants pull grotesque faces while wearing horse collars
Claire Lister won the women’s title at the competition at the Crab Fair in Egremont, Cumbria
A typical gurn involves pushing the lower jaw as far forward and up as possible, and covering the upper lip with the lower lip.
Competitors must wear a large horse collar at the same time as gurning – but the rules are generally accepted to stop there.
Mr Mattison said: ‘I’m absolutely chuffed to bits. It doesn’t matter how many times I win it, I want to win it on the night.
‘I put a lot of effort into that. I’m aching, I’m tired – but it was well worth it.’
A representative from Guinness World Records was on hand to officiate the event.
Comedian Josh Widdicombe (pictured) entered the contest alongside fellow comic Nish Kumar
The World Gurning Championship sees contestants pull grotesque faces wearing horse collars
World champion Tommy Mattison (pictured) won the men’s title for a record breaking 18th time
Adrian Zivelonghi was pictured practicing before the contest that has run for hundreds of years
Gurning champion Mr Mattison was presented with a certificate for holding the record for the most wins of the male World Gurning Championships.
The event was also officially recognised as the world’s longest-running World Gurning Championships.
Craig Glenday, editor-in-chief at Guinness World Records, also competed in the men’s event.
‘It’s the best part of the job that I get to travel round the world doing things like this,’ he said.
‘And you get to meet all the lovely communities their characters and the heroes like Tommy, and just to celebrate old traditions like this. It’s just fantastic.
‘It’s also a first for me competing I never normally compete in these things.’
Tommy Mattison (pictured) said: ‘It doesn’t matter how many times I win it, I want to win it on the night.’
Ged Eccles was pictured practicing before this year’s contest after it was halted for four years due to Covid and the death of Queen Elizabeth II
Adrian Zivelonghi took part in the event which was officiated by an official from Guinness World Records
Adrian Zivelonghi (pictured) joined the contest which was attended by comedians Josh Widdicombe and Nish Kumar who are believed to be trying their hands at being local journalists
Claire Lister retained her ladies’ title for the seventh time – much to the delight of the crowd.
She said: ‘It’s one of them we’re I’m always quite nervous, my heart races. But I’m really happy now.’
The event was returning for the first time in four years due to Covid and the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
Kumar and Widdicombe are thought to be touring the country trying their hand as local news reporters for a TV programme.
It’s unclear if this appearance was part of the show.
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