Turkish Camel Westling: Perhaps the World's Greatest Spectator Sport

John LewisSenior Writer IApril 12, 2008

One sport that's gaining the attention of many and could become one of the greatest spectator sports is...wait for it...Turkish Camel Wrestling.

I'm serious. This sport is one that is attracting legions of fans from all over the world and is one of the most expensive sports to compete in.  

Forget Sumo wrestling, this sport sports the largest athletes in the world. Camel owners parade around their prize possessions during the winter time while talking some trash about the other camels.

Each camel is expertly fed to increase their size: They can get up to 1000 kilograms, or one ton.  Blood sport, it's not, but it’s certainly very entertaining as spectators take bets on which camel will be left standing.

This is the way it works.The mammoth creatures butt heads with each other until one falls or runs away. It's happened where both have run the other direction but not that often. 

Many times one of the camels will realize defeat and run toward the crowd, maybe looking for help, while the other comes chasing behind.  The crowd will then have to run out of the way or get trampled...apparently this is when the action really happens.

But before the match and gratuitous violence, the two are led out and a young cow walks around to get them excited. So how do you know when a camel is excited?  Well, streams of viscous milky saliva come from their mouths and nostrils.

I guess it may also extract fear in their opponent.  There is even a camel wrestling league with standings updates.  As crazy as this sport sounds, other countries have bullfighting and cockfighting.