COMPETITIONS ON BOATS MADE FROM BEER TANKS.
From childhood, everyone knows a poem in the translation of Samuel Yakovlevich Marshak about how the three sages decided to swim across the sea into a basin. But if they had made a boat out of beer cans, their journey would have ended more safely. In any case, the organizers and participants of the regatta, almost the most unusual in the world, think so. They make their craft from empty beer cans. And all this action takes place in Australia.
Every year, in this country, on the coast of Darwin (the city beach of Mindil), a race of home-made ships is held. For their manufacture, the participants of the regatta are allowed to use both aluminum beer cans and plastic bottles, cardboard bags made from milk and juice, cans from soda. The competition was first held in 1974.There are two official versions about the cause of this extravagant sport (if at all it can be called a sport). The first version says that after another storm on the coast, a lot of garbage remained, and the organizers of the event came up with an original idea about how to quickly and fun to clean. The second version – beer cans remained on the shore after the workers who reconstructed buildings damaged by the storm. There is also a third, unofficial version – some say that the race began with the use of rum bottles in 1606, after the Dutch ship “Duyfken” under the command of Captain Willem Janszun visited Australia.
The jury does not impose any restrictions on the appearance and design of the vessels; it all depends on the imagination of the participants. At the start, you can see boats of both the simplest designs – such as a raft, and more sophisticated modifications – multi-component catamarans constructed of thousands of cans. All this then, of course, is utilized. There is only one mandatory condition for the design – the container from which the vessel is made must be empty. Cans are collected in pairs, combining open ends, and glued together, using silicone for this. Then blocks are assembled from pairs, and structures are assembled from blocks. All this is held together, usually with tape. But the founder of the event, Lutz Frankenfeld, even managed to attach a 200 hp engine to the boat.
According to the conditions of the competition, finished vessels are not checked by the judges for seaworthiness before the start of the race. All boats are launched immediately before launch. Here, rather, the ability to hold out on water is estimated rather than speed. Of course, homemade products can not boast of excellent seaworthiness. Some of them begin to sink immediately after the descent, and many fall apart under the blows of the waves. But this only enhances the entertainment of the regatta! All participants are able to swim, dressed in life jackets and prepared for all sorts of surprises. And the surprises after the start are just beginning, as the participants of the races are subjected to all kinds of attacks (both explicit and hidden) from their competitors. The following are launched: water cannons, smoke bombs of bright color, packets of flour. An attack from under the water is not excluded. The winner of the competition is the team that first returns a makeshift boat to the registration tent on the beach.
In addition to environmental and sports – recreational goals pursued by the organizers of the regatta, this event also raises funds for charity. And according to some estimates, since the advent of this exotic sport, the amount of donations to date has amounted to more than 1 million US dollars.