Ever dreampt of winning a world championship event, training the champion or just simply spectating? Now’s your chance at the World Championship Snail Racing event held annually at Congham
(Did you know that snails in Our Norfolk are known as Dodmans?)
Ready, Steady, Slow!
‘Congham is to snail racing as Newmarket is to horse racing’, so says Snail Master Neil Riseborough. With over 200 entries last year, the snails have to compete in heats during the afternoon by racing to the outside of a circle that’s 13” in diameter, with numbered stickers on their shells. The course is kept well watered to encourage good speeds. The grand final in 2011 saw Zoomer win in an impressive time of 3 mins 23 secs. Owner/trainer Anton Lucas was ‘well pleased’ with his world championship debut. However, this is snail’s pace compared to the current world record holder, Archie, who in 1995 raced away to win in 2 minutes!
The world record can only be challenged at Congham, no foreign escargot-types are allowed, the competitors ‘slug’ it out for a silver tankard stuffed with lettuce leaves. The event is held within Congham Village Fete, raising money for the lovely 13C St Andrews church. The 2012 championships will be held on July 21st (nearest postcode PE31 1AH).
Take a look at this short clip showing all the highlights, go along and compete or simply watch the action.
I’m off to look under our allotment shed.
(All content provided courtesy of www.snailracing.net and all images by Mark Scase, who retains copyright)