The first Olympic marathon was pretty wild: an Australian competitor collapsed and then punched a spectator, the third-place runner was disqualified for riding in a carriage, and a woman prevented from entering ran the same course the next day.
In 1969, Honduras and El Salvador went to war while their football teams faced off in a World Cup qualifier.
Between 1894 and 1895 Annie Londonderry cycled around the world – the first woman to do so.
When Jean Shrimpton walked out onto Flemington Racecourse in Melbourne, Australia, in 1965, she didn’t know she was about to make fashion history.
Most crosswords have a single correct solution. A quantum crossword has several.
Sepak takraw resembles volleyball, except you can only use your feet, knees, and head. The kicks are amazing, but you should not let the sons of sultans and prime ministers play.
In 2011, the World Computer Chess Championship banned the four-time champion Rybka chess engine for cheating.
In the 1993 World Open chess tournament, an unknown competitor drew a match against a grandmaster. He used a computer to cheat.
The ghost of KFC’s Colonel Sanders has haunted a Japanese baseball team since 1985.
If you’re playing underwater rugby or football, how do you keep the ball from floating or sinking?
The Muhammad Ali vs. Rocky Marciano boxing match was screened in theatres across Europe and North America in 1970. In American theatres, Marciano won. In European theatres, Ali did.
In 1989 the residents of Sōbetsu, Japan, formalised rules for competitive snowball fighting. Thirty-one world championships have since been played in the town.
The earliest fully recorded game of modern chess – from the 15th century CE – is a poem about love.
Lord Dunsany was an early 20th century fantasist whose writing inspired Tolkien, H. P. Lovecraft, and many others. He also invented a chess variant where one side has 32 pawns and no other pieces.
Gaelic football and Australian Rules football teams don’t have much international competition. So they decided to play each other instead.
Consider three special dice: A, B, and C. On a fair roll, A is more likely to beat B. B is more likely to beat C. But C is more likely to beat A. These are nontransitive dice.