Fans of panto looking for a fun family day out can watch 30 “horses” take to the streets in a charity race this weekend.
The London Pantomine Horse Race, now in its ninth year, is taking place in Greenwich on Sunday (16 September) at 1pm. The race, dubbed one of the world’s “wackiest annual events”, is set to be the biggest yet featuring over 30 panto horses dressed in the style of iconic film and TV characters as they navigate pit-stops and unexpected obstacles during the quarter-mile race. The race has 21 panto horse teams confirmed so far with two people per “horse”.
It is hoped the race, which raised over £17,000 for charity in 2017, will raise £25,000 for this year’s chosen charity, YOUCAN-Youth Cancer Support. A pre-race fundraising challenge, “Back A Nag”, allows the teams to raise as much money as they can through online donations and the team that raises the most will receive pole position on raceday.
A pre-race ceremony show begins at 11am at Davenport House at King William Walk, hosted by former Cbeebies TV presenter Sara-Jane Honeywell, featuring special guest appearances and live musical performances from X-Factor’s Honey G before a panto horse dance-off contest, “Stricly Neigh Dancing”. The Father Ted-themed parody will have panto horse teams dressed as characters from the TVv programme as they battle it out to be crowned the 2018 Strictly Neigh Dancing champion.
The pre-race show then takes on a Monthy Phython theme when the panto horses teams will be escorted to the starting line by King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, also known as, “The Python Knights”
Regents Park will be home to charity horse racing with a difference today, as eight pantomime horses prepare to stick
Two runners have broken the world 100metre sprint record for a pantomime horse
Honey G launches the race from Devonport House which finishes at Royal Hill with six pub “pit stops” along the way. The best five performing horse teams will then be chosen to race to the finish line on Space Hoppers. The team first past the finish line will be greated by Honey G and crowned the 2018 champion.
The after-race show begins at 2.30pm and will be hoested by US comedian, Lewis Shaffer and feature performances from Honey G, Taylor Swift tribute act, Katy Ellis and Monthy Python tribute show Singalot.
Entry to the pre-race ceremony and race day is free. Tickets for the after-race show are £15 and can be reserved by emailing email@example.com.
For all the latest news analysis, competition reports, interviews, features and much more, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, on sale every Thursday.