Dom Joly: Spouse schlepping, glacial golf or hubcap hurlin' – you choose

Weird World of Sport: The slogan of the Redneck Games is 'everyone and their butt crack is welcome

Share
Related Topics

I thought that I should kick off the year by returning to the roots of what this column was supposed to be all about – very weird sports. I've decided to find the three weirdest events and then ask you, my beloved reader(s) to vote for which one I should take part in. After much research involving typing in the words "weird sports" into a search engine I have come up with the following:



Wife Carrying – This was invented in Finland. I've been there and can understand the need to come up with something to do. It's one of the dullest countries that I've ever visited.

The Finns, however, are not a slight nation and the idea of carrying some of the huge Amazons that I saw striding the streets of Helsinki fills me with dread.

As far as I can make out, competitors put their wives over their heads – one leg on each side with the bum facing forward and then have to complete a fiendish obstacle course in the quickest time. The course is 253 metres and situated in the town of Sonkajärvi.

The event apparently has its origins in the 19th century when the practice of abducting local women was popular. Under spoilsport modern Finnish law this pastime is now illegal so the locals have kept the tradition alive in the form of the wife-carrying race. The winner gets his wife's weight in beer. This could be a very good event for me as I happen to have a very small wife.



Ice Golf – This takes place in Greenland and is self-explanatory. There is a world championship held each year and enterprising golfers hack their way through glaciers and snow in temperatures as low as -50c. The ball is orange and there is the risk of losing it to a polar bear.

Having played a couple of rounds down in the Cotswolds over Christmas, I think I'm pretty prepared for this one. It was minus six last week and I could barely hold my club so I'm not sure how it works in Greenland but I'm sure that they've got it organised.

If I'm honest, I'm somewhat of a fair-weather golfer but this does sound interesting. I've always wanted to go to Greenland but had absolutely no reason to do so until now.



The Redneck Games – Originally set up as a jokey alternative to the Atlanta Olympics this event is now huge in the United States. Sports include hurling toilet seats, bobbin' for pigs' feet and hubcap hurlin'. The slogan for the games is "everyone and their butt crack is welcome". I partake in several UK Redneck activities in the Cotswolds. I do quite a lot of cow-tipping, my fair share of cow-pat frisbee and there's the cheese rolling that a lady named Zoe has paid a considerable sum to take part in with me.

The problem is that rednecks don't like us Brits. I've had three very hairy run-ins with groups of them in Alabama and Mississippi. Unlike the presenters of Top Gear, I wasn't driving through their patch in cars with things like "man love" and "Hilary for president" on them. That would be just stupid. Once I had the temerity to walk into a gas station outside Jackson, Mississippi, and ask for the "loo". I was very nearly lynched.

Another time it was something about my clothing that set off a bearded man in Birmingham, Alabama. He punched me very hard in the face about 10 seconds after I'd walked into a bar. Still, I'm sure the Redneck games will be fun(ish).



The weirdest "sport" I've done so far was in New Zealand and it consited of being strapped to a huge rocket that was suspended on a wire over a steep ravine and then fired off to swing like some huge crazy pendulum for 10 uncontrolled minutes.

Looking back I'm not even sure if it was a sport per se. It was more an activity for people with suicidal inclinations. There are a lot of these type of things in New Zealand where the boredom threshold is high. It might be worth me revisiting and doing a "weird world" special from there.

Email your votes for which of the above three you fancy me doing to Sport@Independent.co.uk.

Honours even, only because I can't remember what they all mean

Excellent to see all the Olympics stars getting their Honours last week. I'm still a little confused about the hierarchy though. If you're knighted then that's obviously brilliant as your wife finally becomes a "lady" and everyone can call you "sir" and you get top tables in restaurants. The CBE, MBE and OBE, however, are a little vaguer. First, it's much more difficult to drop your titles into a dinner reservation – "Yes, hello can I book a table for two in the name of Hamilton, Lewis Hamilton...MBE?" Also, there is a difference between MBE and CBE but I can never remember what. I think the OBE is supposed to be a little, how can I put this, classier than the MBE. The CBE is clearly a "top table" one for posh events like sailing – it seems however, that the Queen thinks Rebecca Adlington (OBE) is posher than Christine Ohuruogu (MBE). I'd love to be in those decision meetings...

Darts goes toe-to-toe for Olympics spot...

There are calls for darts to be an Olympic sport. The ancient sport of toe wrestling has also applied. Best of luck to both of them...

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Telesales Executive - OTE £25,000

£13000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Would you like to be part of a ...

Recruitment Genius: 1st Line Technical Support Engineer

£19000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT and Telecoms company ar...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Manager - Visitor Fundraising

£23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The Visitor Fundraising Team is responsi...

Recruitment Genius: Developer

£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
An investor looks at an electronic board showing stock information at a brokerage house in Shanghai  

China has exposed the fatal flaws in our liberal economic order

Ann Pettifor
Jeremy Corbyn addresses over a thousand supporters at Middlesbrough Town Hall on August 18, 2015  

Thank God we have the right-wing press to tell us what a disaster Jeremy Corbyn as PM would be

Mark Steel
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future