June 1, 2005. Chris Anderson (lower right) snatched victory and an 8-pound (3.5-kilogram) wheel of Double Gloucester (lower left) at Gloucestershire, England's annual Cheese Rolling and Wake. The win came slightly curdled for the 17-year-old, as a sprained ankle landed him in a stretcher. Of the scores of cheese chasers, 3 suffered suspected broken bones, and 18 were treated for minor injuries.
To win his race the second of four Anderson had to chase a rolling cheese down a nearly vertical hill and be the first among many contestants across the finish line.
The event, which may have begun as a pagan ceremony, goes back at least 200 years. Time, it seems, has done little to dim the local fervor for it.
"The pain was worth it," Anderson, clutching his tasty trophy, told the Associated Press. "This cheese is going straight in a cupboard when I get home. It's definitely not for eating."
-- written by Ted Chamberlain