A Day at the ... Hen Races?

Posted by Allie Layos

For more than 25 years, some of the world's fastest hens have been meeting in the United Kingdom for the the World Hen Racing Championship.

Each year on the first Saturday in August these hens and their owners converge at the Barley Mow Inn public house in Bonsall, Derbyshire in the United Kingdom for a day of egg-cellent competition.

The area has a long history of hen racing, tracing back over 100 years to when local villages competed against each other for fun.

Today entries in the World Hen Racing Championship are raced over a track of approximately 15 meters, and are allotted three minutes in each heat to cross the finish line. Fighting among hens is strictly forbidden and can result in disqualification.

In many senses the event is laid back and centered around fun -- it is free to watch and even free to enter. Anyone with a hen can take part, and visitors can even rent a chicken and join the festivities.

However, some of the competitors spend months training their hens, putting them through rigorous exercises to ensure they are in perfect shape for competition, and past races have seen entries from all over the world, including Norway, Belgium, France and Germany.

This year's World Hen Racing Championship will take place on August 6, and racing begins at 1:30 p.m.

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A Day at the ... Hen Races?