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Marble Racing Videos Are the Closest Thing to Real Sports We Have Now

They make it just a bit easier to endure a sports-less quarantine.

Sporting events around the world were canceled en masse once it became clear that gathering thousands of people in one place was a pretty excellent way to spread the coronavirus. But the spirit of competition lives on, and folks are finding creative ways to fill the void.

You could simply play video games for hours, stream old sporting events on YouTube, or tune into pro wrestling matches turned Beckett plays. But our favorite sports substitute thus far has to be marble racing.

It’s exactly what it sounds like: A bunch of marbles released simultaneously from a starting line down a track filled with twists and turns. It sounds kind of dull, but there’s a surprising amount of drama stoked by energetic announcers who, borrowing techniques from those who call horseraces, speak in increasingly frantic tones as marbles with nicknames like Comet and Mocha Madness zip around curves, over jumps, and past splits in the track that can facilitate late collapses and come-from-behind victories.

It’s not a replacement for March Madness or the baseball season, but it’s not a bad distraction for the time being. Also boosting marble racing’s case as the quarantine pastime of choice for sports fans is the virtually unlimited supply of videos on YouTube channels like Jelle’s Marble Runs along with live events streamed on Twitch.