Here’s an athletic competition that’s not for the faint of heart, or those with a bad back. This Saturday, the town of Newry, Maine, is hosting the annual North American Wife Carrying Championship, part of the World Alternative Games. One might imagine what the prize of this race is, and men listen up you’ll love it.

It’s a simple sport with an easily identifiable objective and a great prize. The objective of the event is to carry your wife through the mud and muck faster than anyone else. The winners get a cash prize and the wife's weight in beer.  What could be better?

The origin of the sport was apparently inspired by the Finnish wife-carrying tradition and a 19th century character named Herkko Rosvo-Rankainen, who--as folklore has it --chose people for his marauding band of thieves based on how well they could carry wives away as they plundered the villages.

Lucky, the modern day version includes only willing participants, and the women don't even have to be married. To compete teams must be comprised of a man and a woman, 21 years or older. Women are welcome to carry the men, but that usually doesn't work out well so much.”

Here’s how it works: Teams compete two at a time on a 278-yard alpine course, making their way though wooden hurdles, beer barrels, sand traps, and a water hazard nicknamed the “widow maker” until the two fastest couples make their way to the finals.



[via Fox News]

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