They're fast. They're cute. They're humble.
They were the participants in Saturday's Hamster Races at your local pet mega-stores.
Post time was 2 p.m. Kids from all corners of the Metroplex brought in their cute critters to do battle in colorful, plastic balls.
The kids lined up with their hamsters and let the little fellas tumble and rumble within their plastic ball to the finish line.
The winner at one store was Lightning, whose 13-year-old owner, Matthew Wright, had him working out on a daily regimen on the family's stairwell in Arlington.
The competition was fun. And fierce. And we caught it on video. One little girl was visibly shaken when her pet didn't work up enough momentum to get the ball going on the plastictrack.
This particular mega-store chain stages other races, from pugs to chihuahuas to turtles.
Hamster racing was briefly outlawed in Albuquerque last year before the mayor declared that the races can go on, as long as no one lays down any cash.
According to Wikipedia (and what better source is there?), hamster races have a colorful history. English gentlemen turned to wagering on them when an outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease caused the cancellation of some British horse races.
Imagine that. Hamster racing was once the sport of kings.
Tommy Cummings | firstname.lastname@example.org