Rishi Sunak makes 'shorter in real life' joke as he tries to charm Ludlow Racecourse audience

Rishi Sunak claimed he is the candidate to win back North Shropshire when he galloped into Ludlow Racecourse in the race to be the new Prime Minister.

Rishi Sunak at the hustings event at Ludlow Racecourse
Rishi Sunak at the hustings event at Ludlow Racecourse

The former Chancellor, who is up against Liz Truss in the Conservative Leadership contest, addressed Tory members at a hustings event in South Shropshire.

He tried to charm the audience, saying Ludlow MP Philip Dunne tells him that "the fantastic John Betjemen described this as the loveliest place in Britain", before joking about his short stature.

He said: "I've been meeting so many people who've said 'wow, you're even shorter in real life'."

Rishi Sunak and Philip Dunne MP

He then claimed he will boost the economy, reduce taxes and help people combat the cost of living.

"I passionately believe that the best way to reduce inequality and transform lives is by ensuring the birthright of every child is a world class education

"I think our country faces some significant challenges. Honesty and trust come by delivering on the things that you say. I've set a bold and radical plan to reform the NHS.

"I've set out a plan to grip illegal migration and restore trust back in the system.

"Inflation makes everyone poorer and eats into hard earned savings. Of course I'm going to support people with the cost of living.

"I'm going to grow the economy by cutting business tax this autumn. I'm going to seize the opportunities from Brexit. I'm going to cut people's taxes. We reward people who are working hard.

"When it comes to reuniting the country we have to do something special. We have to make history and win a fifth election in a row.

"To do that we will have to appeal to swing voters everywhere. We have to win back North Shropshire. We have to win in Wales and Scotland. I am the candidate to win everywhere and ensure Keir Starmer never walks through the door of Number 10.

"You saw me act boldly, ripping up the rule book to protect businesses and emerge resilient on the other side."

Rishi Sunak at Ludlow Racecourse

When he introduced Mr Sunak, Ludlow MP Philip Dunne said he had run a poll on the leadership race, which showed 34 per cent back Mr Sunak, 33 per cent for Ms Truss and 33 per cent were undecided.

Mr Sunak said: "I promise you this. I will give you my everything, my heart, my soul, to ensure every one of you can be proud to be Conservative."

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