BELFAST, Maine — Residents re-elected incumbent Mayor Walter Ash by nearly 500 votes Tuesday, according to preliminary election results.

Ash received 1,330 votes to challenger Jim O’Connor’s 846, according to election officials.

O’Connor said Tuesday night that he enjoyed running for office and that the two had run a “friendly” race.

“It was a challenge for me because I was running against an incumbent mayor in very good times for Belfast. That was a hard hill to climb,” he said. “I gave it my best, worked hard to get my message out there. That’s the way it goes.”

Efforts to reach Ash were unsuccessful.