LAKE STEVENS — A man with Snohomish County roots traveled to England to run downhill after a wheel of cheese Monday.
Not only did Cooper Cummings win his race at the Cooper’s Hill Cheese Rolling and Wake, he beat the current world record holder.
The event, held every year near Gloucester, is an English tradition dating back centuries. The goal is to chase a 7-pound wheel of double Gloucester cheese down a 200-yard near vertical hill. It’s as dangerous as it is absurd. Just ask Canadian Delaney Irving, 19, who won her race, despite being briefly knocked unconscious, as the Associated Press reported.
Cummings, 23, grew up in Lake Stevens and is an Arlington High School alumnus. In December, he graduated from Western Washington University in Bellingham with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. His dad, Trey Cummings, told The Daily Herald his son currently coaches high school sports and teaches as a substitute in the Nooksack Valley School District in Whatcom County.
In an interview after the race, Cooper Cummings said participating in the cheese-rolling had been on his bucket list for a decade. It was only after graduating college did he finally have the free time to do it, he said.
“It happened so quickly, I don’t even remember it,” Cooper Cummings told Gloucester News Centre immediately following the race. “I’m kind of hurting a little bit, the adrenaline is wearing off, but I got the cheese, so it was worth it.”
Cooper Cummings competed in the second men’s race against 23-time race winner Chris Anderson. His defeat was considered a major upset.
“I just lined up next to Chris and said, ‘Just go as fast as he goes.’ And that’s what I did,” he told Greatest Hits Radio Gloucester. “I knew he was a legend in this town and I really wanted to beat him.”
Cummings added he was “super emotional” after winning and considered hitting up a local pub to celebrate.