Canberrans horse around at Finnish Crazy Games

Giddy up: Michael Borg trying to beat the best time in hobby horsing at the Finnish Crazy Games on Saturday. Photo: Dion Georgopoulos

Giddy up: Michael Borg trying to beat the best time in hobby horsing at the Finnish Crazy Games on Saturday. Photo: Dion Georgopoulos

There was quite a bit of horsing around at the Finnish embassy on Saturday, as thousands of Canberrans gathered to take part in some unconventional sports.

The embassy played host to the Finnish Crazy Games, a weekend-long event that doubled as a celebration of all things Finland ahead of the Scandinavian nation's centenary of independence.

Among the games on display for the public to try out was hobby horsing, with competitors riding toy horses and jumping over miniature jumps.

The sport has been around in Finland for several years but has gained exposure recently after videos of competitions have gone viral online.

Throughout the day, Canberrans got the chance to choose their horse and compete in time trials to see who could get to the finish (or should that be Finnish) line first.

Katri Doup from the embassy said crazy sports is all part of Finnish culture.

"It's especially Finnish to make a sport out of something silly or funny and make it proper and serious," she said.

Racing toy horses aside, there were several other events taking place at the embassy.

Among them were wife-carrying competitions, folk dancing as well as N-oar-dic dancing - a twist on Nordic walking where competitors had to use oars instead of walking poles - and an air guitar championship.

Tom Hill from Air Guitar Australia said Finland is the host of the world championships every year, and it was only fitting for the event to feature at the crazy games.

"Some people think air guitar is ridiculous, and some think it's seriously ridiculous, but a lot of people embrace it," he said.

"The performances are based on three criteria: stage presence, technicals and the 'airness', which is the essence that lifts it from someone just strumming along to being at a world-class level."

Dorota Gozdecka was one of the people who attended on Saturday, and even took part in a round of hobby horsing.

Originally from Finland, she said it was a chance to reconnect with her home country.

"All the crazy sports are absolutely part of our culture. I guess I wanted to reconnect with the country that I miss," she said.

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