Curling is not the most riveting sport in the world to watch. The fact that you can earn an Olympic medal for sliding a heavy stone across some ice seems a little ludicrous, but I’m sure it has its finer points. (Scrubbing the ice with those brooms looks pretty athletic, I guess.) Leave it to a bunch of Russians to find a way to make curling a thousand times more interesting by replacing the stones with cars and turning the whole thing into a demolition derby on ice.
According to RT, the Urals city of Ekaterinburg recently hosted an exhibition tournament where curling enthusiasts used stripped-down Soviet-era cars in place of stones. Four teams of 10, including one professional curling team, pushed the compact cars across a frozen field. No brooms were used, and the driver was allowed to steer after his team let go.
The cars, compact Oka cars designed in the late 1970s, are considered a bit of a joke in Russia, even by consumers brought up on flimsy Soviet-bloc vehicles like the Lada.
“It took us a month to prepare for the game,” Galina Kirkach, the organizer of the event, told Tass news agency. “We had to buy six cars, which were all in a different state, and then remove the glass for safety, and the motors for lightness, so that they would slide better on the ice.”
She also confirmed that the purpose of the spectacle wasn’t just to make curling a little less snooze-worthy, but also to promote her insurance business. “Curling looks boring on TV, but I played it once with friends and realized what a great sport it was,” said Kirkach, an auto insurance agent. “Then we decided to combine the idea of curling with cars. We constantly see accidents on the road, and we thought that this would attract people’s attention to the need for insurance.”
Yes, what better way to raise awareness about the need to obtain auto insurance than by slamming a bunch of cars into each other on the ice?