BEST times for both the men's and women's races tumbled as a record number of athletes turned out to run Sunday's ASICS Windermere Marathon.

The 13th marathon attracted 975 competitors to run a demanding 26.2 mile, anti-clockwise route of the lake taking in the honey pot towns and villages of Hawkshead, Newby Bridge, Bowness and Ambleside.

First runner back to Brathay was Rob Corney, from Reading Road Runners, in an impressive 2-29-56. He sliced more than two minutes of the previous best mark set in 2011. The women’s race was won by Mary Hammond in 3-02-58, more than four minutes ahead of the previous record from 2009.

Mary’s run was even more remarkable as she finished 12th overall in what was her first marathon.

For 16 of the runners it was their final marathon in a series of ten which they began on Friday May 10 - Brathay’s infamous 10in10.

Forty-four-year-old Tony Hooper, from Grimsby, returned for his third 10in10 and ran each marathon in under four hours giving him the fastest time in the event's history.

The fastest female was Marie Williamson, also 44, who runs with Glossopdale Harriers and Derbyshire Dynamos. She ran her first marathon in 4-35-59 and averaged 5-06-45.

Ex Lakes School pupil Matt Whitehead ran each marathon between 4-30-00 and 5-30-00 each day.

The day also saw 158 runners take part in the first ever five kilometre race which took runners through Skelwith Fold and along the River Brathay. The first runner back was Rob Pope in a time of 17-35 and the first woman over the finish line was local runner Lauren Booth in 22-40 in ninth 9th overall. Locally quarried slate medals were provided by Burlington Stone to all those who crossed the finishing line.

Brathay’s Head of Fundraising, Scott Umpleby – himself a long distance fell runner – said: “Our running events are bucking national trends. We saw record numbers signing up for the marathon and one of the largest fields to enter the 10in10.

"We were delighted that so many took part in our new 5km race and the junior races were as popular with almost 50 youngsters taking part.

Each morning pupils from Hawkshead and Esthwaite Primary School lined up to cheer on the 10 in 10 athletes.

The event raises thousands for the Ambleside-based Brathay Trust which works with 7,000 young people in the north of England every year.