Teapot Racing, where steampunk creativity meets an obstacle course. That's right, Teapot Racing. It is a real sport that combines remote control vehicle chassis with teapots. Based on the creation of Victorian aficionados in New Zealand in 2015, Splendid Teapot Racing now has chapters in Europe and the US.
Teapot racing involves several obstacles that each racer must maneuver in order to complete the heat. The teapot must overcome the Candlestick Slalom, the Chasm of Despair, and the Ramp of Doom to qualify. Time is the most important factor in judging the winner, but technique, the overall teapot style, and even bribes are all considered by the judges. Click here for Official Splendid Teapot Racing Rules.
Here are the course obstacles your teapot must defeat in order to be race worthy:
In true Steampunk tradition, style is crucial to teapot racing. Racers are judged on their own costume, as well as the creativity in their racer design. The styling of teapots can be whimsical or practical, but definitely should be eye catching.
Teapot Racing is less than 2 years old, but is already an official sport at many alternate history conventions around the world. It is a staple in New Zealand and is picking up popularity across the United States. We experienced Teapot Racing at AnachroCon in Georgia and there will be a rather exciting Teapot Race at Wild Wild West Con in Arizona.
Bribery is not always a requirement in Teapot Racing (in fact a European convention expressly forbids it), but it is an amusing part of the competition. Wild Wild West Con's judges state: The Grand Arbiter and Madame Askew have very happily received bribes of such creativity as the recipe for perfect Chantilly Cream (invaluable!), exquisitely paired eyewear (often worn), and perfectly timed compliments (never out of fashion). In accordance with the spirit of Splendid Teapot Racing, bribes should take into account whimsy, humor, and good will. One should never mortgage the family airship in exchange for a bribe.
Even if you've spent all your money building your Teapot Racer, a cute compliment may be all that you need to outwit your competition. We're excited to see where this sport goes and we can't wait to see a whole new round of teapots! For more information on upcoming races, check out Splendid Teapot Racing USA.