Three stamina-sapping races on the same day in north Pembrokeshire will not be held this year after the Covid-19 crisis put paid to the Preseli Beast.

The ninth annual Preseli Beast run over 24 miles in the Preseli Hills and the Gwaun Valley on Saturday, May 2, has been cancelled along with Beast Bach (Small Beast) over 11 miles and Ultra Beast taking in 32 miles and elevations of nearly 6,000 feet.

Started in 2012 the three races start and finish in the village of Maenclochog which will miss out on a large influx of competitors and spectators this year.

There is a limit of 250 runners for the Beast Race and a total of 200 for the other two events, competitors having to contend with some of the toughest terrains imaginable, including fell, boggy ground and extremely steep climbs.

The races – all three have cut off times – have been growing in popularity over the years with one of the features hugely friendly and helpful marshals who man water banks every five miles.

One of the organisers said: “With the coronavirus at such a stage we had no chance of going ahead, but we’ll be back next year.”