287 - The Heber Springs

Parece uma prova tipicamente americana, mas é uma corrida de barcos de papelão(!) que acontece também em outros países.
by John Rigg.

There are many crazy sports in the world, but the “Heber Springs’ World Championship {yootooltip title=[ Cardboard ]} Cardboard: papelão, papel-cartão {/yootooltip} Boat Races” must be the craziest. Heber Springs is a small town on the {yootooltip title=[ shore ]} shore: margens {/yootooltip} of Greers Ferry Lake. It is in Arkansas, in the United States. This year’s event takes place on July 30th.
The Cardboard Boat Race is certainly spectacular. The boats aren’t simple boxes. They are {yootooltip title=[all kinds of shapes and sizes]} all kinds of shapes and sizes: de todos os tipos de formatos e tamanhos {/yootooltip}. There are traditional {yootooltip title=[ pirate ships ]} pirate ships: navios de pirata {/yootooltip} with {yootooltip title=[ crews ]} crews: tripulação {/yootooltip} of six or more people. There are one-man canoes. Last year there was Scooby Doo’s VW {yootooltip title=[ van ]} van: furgão {/yootooltip} and an incredible {yootooltip title=[ guitar-shaped ]} guitar-shaped: no formato de um violão {/yootooltip} ship.

All the boats have one thing in common: they are made of cardboard. They must survive four 200-metre races to win the championship, not just one! So {yootooltip title=[ how do they stay afloat? ]} how do they stay afloat?: como é que eles não afundam? {/yootooltip} Local companies and families take months over their preparation. First the form of the ship is created using cardboard. The parts are {yootooltip title=[ glued together ]} glued together: juntadas e coladas {/yootooltip} and {yootooltip title=[joints are reinforced with tape]} joints are reinforced with tape: juntas são reforçadas com fita adesiva {/yootooltip}. Small blocks of wood are used {yootooltip title=[to mount oars and masts]} to mount oars and masts: para montar remos e mastros {/yootooltip}. But here’s the real secret: the {yootooltip title=[ bottom ]} bottom: fundo, a parte debaixo {/yootooltip} of the boats are painted and then covered with {yootooltip title=[wax]} wax: cera {/yootooltip}.

Finally, the boats are taken to Sandy Beach and launched onto the lake. The Ozark Mountains form the magical background to the scene. The races begin. {yootooltip title=[ The crowds laugh ]} The crowds laugh: a multidão ri {/yootooltip} as many of the boats {yootooltip title=[sink]} sink: afundam {/yootooltip}. The winners are applauded. At the end of the day there is the Demolition Derby. The boats crash into each other. Only the strongest survive. {yootooltip title=[ Prizes are awarded ]} prizes are awarded: prêmios são dados {/yootooltip} to the winners. The Titanic award goes to the most dramatic sinking.

There is something under the water of the lake. But race competitors needn’t worry. It isn’t a monster, it’s an old market town called Higden. The town was submerged when the Greers Ferry {yootooltip title=[ Dam ]} dam: barragem {/yootooltip} was built in the 1960s. The dam created the lake; and Higden is still there, several metres below its {yootooltip title=[surface]} surface: superfície {/yootooltip}.

There’s just one more question: why cardboard? Organiser Marilyn Wright explains: “Because of the {yootooltip title=[challenge]} challenge: desafio {/yootooltip}. It’s a challenge to make it float! And {yootooltip title=[it won’t pollute the lake]} it won’t pollute the lake: não poluirá o lago. {/yootooltip}, either.”

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How much do you remember from The Heber Springs Cardboard Boat Races?