The UK August bank holiday weekend is almost here. You could go to the Reading festival, the popular 3 day music and mud fest. Or you could carry on further down the M4 to Llanwrtyd Wells, Powys, Wales where on the 24th of August they are holding the annual world bog snorkelling championship.
The world championships were first held in 1985 although the sport has been running since 1976 when the idea was conceived, not surprisingly, in a pub. The race is a 120 yards (110m) swim through a peat bog using mask, snorkel and fins (flippers). Arm strokes are not allowed, only fin kicks. The current record holder is Dineka Maguire with a time of 1 minute 23.13 seconds., she has also been the female world champion for the last 4 years.
Over 200 participants are expected this year. Entrants come from around the world to compete, all proceeds go to a local charity. The Welsh event has spawned other bog snorkelling events around the world in Ireland and Australia among others. There is also mountain bike bog snorkelling and a bog snorkeling triathlon.
Previous champions: Wikipedia link