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Fleeting Wonders: Japan’s World Record Baby-Racing Competition

More than 600 Japanese kids just earned a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records before they even learned to walk.

A 610-baby crawling competition, held on November 23 in the Yokohama shopping mall, was the largest one to date, shattering the record of a crawling race with 451 babies that took place in China last year. Infants made their way down a 10-foot track, and the fastest tyke won a headset camera (intended to let parents take constant photos of their offspring while leaving their hands free). Though of course, the real prize is being a part of baby history.

(Image: YouTube screenshot)

Baby crawling races take place worldwide, and like any sporting event, they have their scandals. This summer in Minnesota, the winner of a baby race was disqualified for using a contested ”scooting” technique. The Yokohama race was unmarred by any such controversy, and moved smoothly into the record books.

Well, for some values of “smoothly,” anyway. The scene in the mall was pretty chaotic, with parents trying to coax babies to move faster, and babies mainly doing what babies do, which is cry, poop, and lie down. And yet, they have a Guinness record and you don’t!

We hear you, kid. (Image: YouTube screenshot)

Every day, we track down a fleeting wonder—something amazing that’s only happening right now. Have a tip for us? Tell us about it! Send your temporary miracles to edit@atlasobscura.com.