Wife-carrying husbands brave the mud for beer and cash

The sport of wife carrying was first introduced in Sonkajrvi, Finland (APTN)
The sport of wife carrying was first introduced in Sonkajrvi, Finland (APTN)

The 17th annual North American Wife Carrying Championship took place in Maine on Saturday.

Forty-four couples from all over the world competed for cash and the wife's weight in beer.

Elliot and Giana Storey of Westbrook, Maine won the competition with a winning time of 59.18 seconds.

"Towards the end, you get tired holding on because of the way I hold on I guess," said Ms Storey.

"But, yeah, I just want to see, I want to see what's happening. I can hear or feel how fast he is, which I felt that today. It was great. I could feel he was going super fast."

Second place finishers, Jake and Kristin Barney of Lexington, Virginia remained close on the Storeys heels, crossing the finish line in 1 minute and 2.81 seconds.

The sport of wife carrying was first introduced in Sonkajrvi, Finland. Male competitors race while each carrying a female teammate. The objective is for the male to carry the female through an obstacle track in the fastest time.

Teams in Maine did not need to be legally married, but did need to be comprised of a man and a woman. Both competitors had to be over the age of 21.

Carrying form is the competitors' choice, though most use the Estonian carry where the wife holds her husband around his waist and tightens her legs around his neck, thereby freeing the husband's hands.

Built to international specifications, the North American Wife Carrying Championship course at Sunday River Resort is 254m in length, with two dry obstacles, and one water obstacle often referred to as the 'widow maker'.

Couples do not need to be married to compete, but they do need to be comprised of a man and woman, both of whom need to be over the age of 21. Choice of carry and who carries who is up to the couple.

The winning couple was determined by a head-to-head final race between the top two fastest couples, rather than determined by the top finishing time in the initial round.

APTN / Newshub.