Dean loses out in record rivalry

Catching six-inch nails from 14 feet away isn't everyone's idea of amusement - but “Dexterous” Dean Gould prides himself on his audacious record breaking feats.

FELIXSTOWE: Catching six-inch nails from 14 feet away isn't everyone's idea of amusement - but “Dexterous” Dean Gould prides himself on his audacious record breaking feats.

The 45-year-old, who lives with wife Natalie and three children in Church Road, Felixstowe, narrowly missed out on beating his arch nemesis, strongman Fred “Hercules” Burton, over a series of seven head-to-head tests of strength and dexterity.

Mr Gould has had a friendly rivalry with 64-year-old Hercules, of Cheadle, Staffordshire, since first embarking on his unusual hobby and decided to throw down a challenge to his opponent.

The two competed simultaneously in their home towns over seven trials of daring, which included lifting a tower of bricks off a table and catching a plant pot filled with sand from their elbows.

It was a closely fought thing with some surprises along the way but Hercules finally won bragging rights over his old adversary. The Felixstowe man performed at Brackenbury Sports Centre, while Mr Burton, who is in the Guinness Book of Records for concrete block smashing and blowing up and bursting hot water bottles, appeared at the same time in Cheadle.

Mr Gould, who has held dozens of offbeat records over the past 25 years such as pancake tossing, winkle-picking and beer mat flipping, said: “Fred just beat me but it was really good fun and I congratulate him on winning.

Most Read

“My fingers were bruised after catching the nails with no gloves on. They kept hitting my knuckles!

“We're planning a rematch at the beginning of next year.”

Both men are set to feature in Believe the Unbelievable - a book dedicated to human achievements, which Mr Gould calls “the book for the record breaker.”

How they compared:

Nail catching - catching as many six-inch nails, thrown from 14 feet away, in one hand, as possible in a minute; Mr Gould: 19/Mr Burton 21

Brick lift off a table - lifting a tower of bricks with one hand and holding it for five seconds; Mr Gould: 8/Mr Burton 15

Brick balance - holding as many bricks on the palm of your hand as possible; Mr Gould: 8/Mr Burton 12

Weight catch from elbow - like coin snatching, but using a plant pot filled with sand; Mr Gould: 34 lbs/Mr Burton 33lbs

Heaviest weight caught from farthest distance - catching a weighted sack thrown from ten feet; Mr Gould: 40lbs/Mr Burton 57.2lbs

Brick swinging - a one-minute exercise involving holding two bricks in one hand and lifting them up and down; Mr Gould: 46/Mr Burton 31

Brick flipping - flipping and catching 12 bricks, one after the other, as fast as possible; Mr Gould: 11.52 secs/Mr Burton 16.53 secs

Mr Burton won by four rounds to Mr Gould's three

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter