RUNNERS got decked out in festive outfits to take on the annual Santa Dash in Horwich.

Most opted for the traditional Father Christmas costumes, but there were also reindeers and Christmas Puddings lining up for the four mile run near Curleys Fisheries in the Wallsuches area.

The annual event, now in its third year is organised by the Mad Bull Events team, which hosts a number of races and brought back the Bolton Half Marathon earlier this year.

Braving the brisk morning and muddy conditions was 36-year-old James Pattison from Altrincham, who donned a Rudolph the Reindeer outfit for the race.

He said: “I am training for the Manchester Marathon next year so I thought this would be a good way to start some training and have a bit of fun as well.

“I have run in the reindeer outfit before, it isn’t too bad to run in although the head can be a bit wobbly.

“It is good to see so many people out and dressed up.”

The race winner was 25-year-old Matthew Dewhurst from Harwood, whose triumph came despite some inappropriate footwear.

He said: “I just had the wrong trainers on and I was slipping all over the place because it was really muddy on the course.

“But I am happy to have won it, it is mainly just a bit of fun but once I started I did get a bit competitive and wanted to finish first.”

Stewart Jones, of Mad Bull Events said: “We are really happy with how many people came along, as always it was a really good atmosphere and people seemed to have fun.”