Leading Article: Out of their shells

Click to follow
The Independent Culture
SNAILS. THE French eat them, you know, but we have to confess a certain admiration. Others may rush about frenetically, but you can't hurry a snail. By contrast, tortoises live life in the fast lane. So it is particularly pleasing to notice the growing popularity of snail racing, evidenced by the turn-out in London yesterday for the Guinness Gastropod Championship. Most sporting spectacles - our minds, for some reason, turn to an England innings - tend to be over all too quickly. However, your snail gives value.

Yesterday, one horse-racing expert described outsider gastropod Shuey's win over Gazza - after some time - by a short antenna, as one of the most exciting races he had ever seen. And that doesn't take into account an attempt on the world 13in sprint record that failed by only 4min and 6sec. And this in a week in which it was reported that many of our young people are in danger of "burning out" as they try to hit the big time early. Did you know that some snails are reputed to be able to sleep for three years? We say: Think Snail.