Camel Racing in Australia’s Outback

  • Camels off the starting line at the 2012 Lasseters Camel Cup.

    Camels off the starting line at the 2012 Lasseters Camel Cup.

  • Founder of the Lasseters cup, Noel Fullerton.

    Founder of the Lasseters cup, Noel Fullerton.

  • Kids join in the race fun.

    Kids join in the race fun.

  • A camel strikes a pose at the Lasseters Camel Cup.

    A camel strikes a pose at the Lasseters Camel Cup.

  • The unpredictable excitement of camel racing.

    The unpredictable excitement of camel racing.

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Move over Kentucky Derby; this summer in Australia’s outback, it’s all about camel racing. The Lasseters Camel Cup, an annual race held in the Northern Territory’s Alice Springs, is devoted to the “temperamental, terribly unpredictable, very entertaining” sport of camel racing. The race began in 1970 as a means to raise funds for local charities and now has donated several hundred thousand dollars to the local community. Wooden hobby camels are used in the special races for children at the Kids Camel Capers eve, but as for racing the real camels, only seasoned professionals can partake, as the animals run at speeds of up to 40 mph on a special track created for the event. The Honeymoon Handicap race reserved for solely for newlyweds promises to be a good show with husbands starting off the race, then picking up their brides before galloping to the finish. The 2014 race will be held on July 12 is expected to draw approximately 5,000 spectators with its range of activities including belly dancing, rickshaw races, food stalls, and even a Mr. and Miss Camel pageant.

For more information, visit Lasseters Camel Cup.

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