Are you a tosser? If so, you may want to head to Lincolnshire this weekend as the 15th World Egg Throwing Championships takes place. This quirky sporting contest is one of the main events at Swaton Vintage Day.
The egg throwing event has five championship disciplines for competitors to take part in. If you fancy taking part in this year’s championship, then the all important disciplines are, the Russian Egg Roulette, Egg Throwing, the Static Relay, the Egg Trebuchet and the Accuracy Challenge. So, what do these egg-based contests involve?
The quirky sport of egg throwing
Egg Throwing is a two person sport. It requires accurate distance lobbing from one and perfect catching from the other. A catcher and tosser are all that’s needed to make up an Egg Throwing team. The team members begin by standing ten metres apart, spreading out after each successful catch. Drop or break the egg and you’re out!
Meanwhile, the Accuracy Challenge is all about hitting the target. The human target. This game awards points for hitting the arms, legs, body and groin of the willing volunteer.
Teams of eleven spread out at ten metre intervals for the Static Relay. Twelve eggs then have to be passed individually along the line. The fastest team wins, but there are penalty time points for breakages. So, you need to be careful as well as quick for this contest.
The Egg Trebuchet is a knock-out challenge. It’s played with the aid of specially built trebuchets. These contraptions help to hurl the eggs over long distances, with the longest achieved being the winner.
Our favourite competition is the Russian Egg Roulette. It involves two players sitting opposite each other, wearing bandanas. The players have six eggs — five hard-boiled and one raw — and take it in turns to smash the eggs against their foreheads. The first one to ‘find’ the raw egg loses! This game can get messy!
The history of egg throwing and the 2022 event
The events are open to all, although the egg-trebuchet competitors register in advance. To take part in any of the other egg throwing events, simply register from 11am on the day. Places are limited, so do get there in plenty of time!
You may be wondering how Egg throwing came to be so popular in Swaton. Well, it reportedly first occurred in Swaton in the 1300s. The then Abbot of Swaton was the area’s only owner of chickens. And he used to give out eggs as alms to the peasants who attended church. However, when the river flooded, the eggs needed to be thrown across the torrent to reach the waiting masses.
This eventually grew into an informal sport called the ‘egg toss’, played at many country fairs, sports days and fetes. And so, the World Egg Throwing Federation was formed in 2004, to cater for the growing sport and regulate the variety of disciplines involved.
Of course, Swaton Vintage Day isn’t just about egg throwing. This year’s event will also have more than 400 classic and vintage vehicles, a craft tent, children’s games and rides, and a novelty dog show. The event is served by a real ale tent and a tea tent, so there’s no need to go thirsty after all that sporting activity!
When: 26th June 2022
Where: Swaton Vintage Day, The Park at Thorpe Latimer, near Sleaford, Lincolnshire
£: Admission to Swaton Vintage Day costs £5 for adults, £3 for children and £12 for a family (children under five years go free). It costs £2 to enter the Accuracy Challenge and there’s no extra charge to enter the other egg throwing games