By Daniel Horbuckle
Cascadia Daily News 

Former WWU track and field star wins UK cheese run

Cooper Cummings named 'King of the Hill' at cheese-rolling contest


Last updated 6/8/2023 at 10:48am

Photo courtesy of Cooper Cummings

Bellingham resident Cooper Cummings, left, holds a cheese wheel after winning the Cooper's Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake contest May 29 in Gloucester, England. Next to him is longtime champion Chris Anderson, who has won the race 23 times.

Former WWU track and field star and Nooksack Valley High School coach Cooper Cummings flew overseas to take home the big cheese: first place in the men's downhill race at the annual Cooper's Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake contest May 29 in Gloucester, England.

The Cooper's Hill Cheese-Rolling and Wake, an annual event attracting thousands of local spectators and tourists alike, involves participants racing down a 200-yard hill, chasing a 7- to 9-pound, wheel-shaped piece of cheese, rolling at speeds of 70 miles per hour.

The event is considered dangerous due to the steepness and uneven surface of the hill and has been canceled several times out of concern for the health and safety of the runners. This year's women's category winner - Delaney Irving of Nanaimo, British Columbia - suffered a head injury after being knocked unconscious while running.

Cummings usurped Chris Anderson, a contestant who holds the record for winning the race 23 times, including in 2022.

The Bellingham athlete posted an all-time record of 13 seconds (30 mph), turning heads with his first appearance win.

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