Is a popular "sport" in the wet, wet, wet Pacific Northwest, where slugs abound in large quantities. Slug racing generally occurs at summer camps, community centres, and children's fairs, most adults having developed either an incompatible love of gardening or an irrational hatred or fear of slugs. The slug trainers bring their own slugs, presumably after months (or at least a few minutes) of training. Bringing salt to the competition to jinx opponents is strictly forbidden. Everyone is issued a square piece of cardboard, and when the signal is given, place their slug in the center (usually marked with an X). The first trainer whose slug who gets completely off the board wins. Obviously, longer slugs have a natural advantage, so banana slugs are a popular choice. Reddy-brown slugs, though short, are very fast, and are also a good choice. Most black slugs are short, slow, and frighten easily and thus don't perform well. Shyness can be a killer - a slug who is frightened in to the curling up reflex won't move - and the patient stroking of the dorsal ridge required to coax them out of it is difficult in the heat of the race. Races generally take from 2-20 minutes. Sometimes a slug will head straight for the edge; more often the winning slug pulls through only after a nail-biting, suspense filled round of several changes of direction, as the short-sighted slugs try to decide the best way to escape the unappealing smooth board. Most trainers rely on their champion slugs' instincts alone to carry them through the race, but some actually attempt to train their slugs, using bits of melon as enticement, placing the melon farther away each time to train the slug to move in a straight line. Some claim success, but as of yet no scientific trials have been conducted.

On an unrelated note, here is my favourite quote about slugs:
"A slug will eat anything - even small birds and animals - if they will stay still long enough." - unknown

Happy racing!

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