Saudi Arabia’s Camel Festival was named the largest event of its kind in the world by the Guinness World Records, according to the Saudi Press Agency.
The Crown Prince Camel Festival in Taif included 11,186 camels, the largest number of camels in a race, and almost 800 races held between Aug. 11 until this past weekend.
During the Camel Festival, $14.3 million worth of prizes were given out to participants from Saudi Arabia, other Gulf States.
While horse racing may be more popular in the United States, camel racing is king in the Middle East, especially Saudi Arabia.
Prize money for camels who win races can be more than $2 million. Bull camels can even sell for more than $5 million.
The sport of camel racing — and even camel beauty contests — is growing by the day, especially with the advancements in breeding technology.
This past winter, Bint Shaheen, a female camel calf bred from a champion racer was born at the Dubai Camel Breeding Center on January 12. She weighed around 30kg (66 pounds) and was in great condition.
She is believed to be the world’s first racing camel conceived using frozen sperm. Bint Shaheen will start her training to become a camel racer once she reaches the right age.
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