An extraordinary athletics competition, held between "twenty-four of the world's top athletes"* in Cheltenham, England, on an annual basis.

Variously televised in the UK on Channel 5 and Bravo, it is produced by Endemol (the people behind Big Brother) and is currently presented by Helen Chamberlain (of Sky Sports' Soccer AM) and Mark Robson (International King of Sports 1998*). Commentary is provided by Alan Parry. Watched by "a global TV audience of five hundred billion"*, International King of Sports includes events which, to the uninitiated, may seem somewhat unusual.

Each event is introduced by the voice of a man with a (possibly put on) rather odd Scandanavian accent, and an even more unusual choice of phraseology. Events include:

  • 10G Human Slalom - Running down a hill between ten sets of slalom flags
  • 200m Backsprint - A 200m sprint. Running backwards
  • 200m Under-Hurdles - A traditional hurdling event, only without all the hassle of going over the barriers
  • 3 Metre Sprint - the "Fastest Race in the World". James Christie (nephew of Linford) completed this race in 2004 in a time of 0.84 seconds
  • Association Bobbage - Jumping flippers-first into a pool, whilst trying to keep your head above water
  • Headlong Dive - Like the long jump, only your feet must not touch the sand first. Distance is measured from the competitor's outstretched fingertips
  • International Skids - After a running start, slide down a slippery track on your feet for as great a distance as possible without falling over, or off the sides of the track
  • Men's Individual Falldown - When the gun sounds, competitors race to fall down and hit a small crashmat with their chins
  • Short Track Sprint - A 100m sprint, held on a circular track 10m in circumference
  • Speed Gun Run - Run directly at a vertical crash-mat. Just before the mat is a speed gun, so the challenge is to keep your nerve and be moving as fast as possible as you hit the mat
  • Tennis Whack - Hitting a tennis ball high into the air, with the aim of maximising hang time
  • Underwater Shot Put - As the name implies; keeping your front foot inside the circle at the bottom of the pool, put the shot as far as possible, whilst trying not to run out of breath!
  • Water Jump - A fairly traditional high-jump, but held on the edge of a swimming pool

* Though these 'facts' are stated on every show, their levels of accuracy appear to be somewhat dubious.

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