What ho! The Chap Olympiad is is back again tomorrow. Time to dust off your vintage garb and roll into London town for another afternoon of utter tomfoolery and fun.
The Chap Olympiad is quite possibly the most eccentric sporting event around. Calling itself "a celebration of athletic ineptitude and immaculate trouser creases", it has been run since 2005 by The Chap magazine, a periodical for discerning gents who want an alternative to modern culture.
As is customary, the Olympiad's events are a bonkers collection of amusing contrivances with judges prizing panache, imagination and skullduggery over actual ability or physical exertion. There will, no doubt, be the traditional opening ceremony as the Olympiad Pipe is smoked and contestants are checked for illegal substances — cads found concealing bottled water or a salad are liable to be disqualified — before the competitors get stuck into the games.
The ever-popular Umbrella Jousting (see above) is back, joined by the likes of Bakewell Battles, Tea Pursuit, Passing The Port Breadbasket Ball and Tug Of Hair (featuring a 20-foot moustache). Victorious competitors — who have in the past masqueraded behind monikers like Lucy Elastic and Gaylord Fistingdon — will walk away adorned with the coveted bronze, silver and gold cravats.
Bourne and Hollingsworth, purveyors of cocktails and other less elegant beverages, will be there to keep the crowd hydrated (or at least lubricated). Chaps and chapesses can soak up the atmosphere and the booze with a range of food from sandwiches to a hog roast, while politely clapping the big bands or cabaret singers. Those wandering around may also find radio plays, country fair side-shows and old-fashioned lawn games, such as a coconut shy, boules, and hoopla.
Period dress is strongly encouraged with organisers suggesting attendees wear "elegant finery, military wear, formal wear, dandy wear and no sportswear except cricket whites and absolutely no denim".
Don't be caught out, chums: while the 2012 event ran over two days, this year Saturday is your lot. Tickets are still available online from the official website.
We have plenty more news and pictures from past Chap Olympiads.
Photo: (c) Lisa Thomson.