Hear ye, hear ye!
The 2015 Sabotage Report has been born–and just in time for this year’s race!
Though we love charity and collective creativity too, sabotage has established itself as a central pillar of CHIditarod culture. Sabotage is often attempted, seldom nuanced. It takes a minute to learn, a lifetime to master. Let your guard down for a second and it will get the better of you.
Since 2011, we have surveyed CHIditarod racers in order to better understand the fine art of sabotage. We analyze that data each year in order to:
- describe the types of sabotage that happens.
- predict who our saboteurs will be.
- identify risk factors for being sabotaged.
- drawing charts and graphs and things.
A Portrait of Sabotage, 2011-2015:
What will you encounter when racing in the CHIditarod this year?? If past races are any indication (spoiler: they are), you can expect to encounter the following shenanigans:
Cart bondage – This includes everything from zip-tying carts together, duct-taping carts to telephone poles, saran wrapping carts, etc.
Altering cart orientation in spacetime – The relocating of carts to the back of the bar, the other side of the street, the dumpster, to the second story of the building, etc. Hanging carts from fences and “L” lines also counts.
Theft of cart components or props – Cheerful yet purposeful relocation of artistic components, like decorations and art pieces, or technical components, like ropes and steering mechanisms, from carts.
Sticky sabotage – The relocation of peanut butter, molasses, whipped cream, shaving cream, Vaseline, or a variety of other viscous fluids onto your cart or your person.
[FYI – food based sabotage is SUPER against the rules and will get you disqualified from the race. It has unfortunately happened in past years. But we’re super serious. You’ll get DQ’d so fast. Don’t do it.]
Creative happy sabotage – Someone has surreptitiously applied glitter, stickers, and My Little Ponies to your cart. Also vandalism, including paint and major re-branding of your cart at the whim of other teams. Shenanigans.
Disabling wheels – Applying obscene amounts of duct tape or some other bulky material to shopping cart wheels for the purposes of hindering their movement and making the cart a real pain in the butt to drag along. Great Stuff foam and liquid adhesive also counts.
Psy ops – This is creative sabotage that is intended to trick other teams into thinking that it is to their advantage to violate the rules of the race and/or sending people on wild goose chases. This includes switching around street signs, handing out fake “skip a checkpoint” coupons, etc.
Cart mass embiggening/adding weight – Placing cinder blocks, concrete, bricks, your teammate, law textbooks, or other significant weights into the cart of your enemies and/or tying them to said cart.
What conclusions did we draw in this year’s report?
- Cart bondage and wheel disabling remain extremely popular forms of sabotage. Together, they represent about half of the reported sabotage attempts.
- In 2015, FIRST TIME RACERS were statistically more likely to be VICTIMS of sabotage. They were also statistically more likely to be SABOTEURS! Oh, youth.
- Racers under 25 years old are the most evil (they practice sabotage more often than other racers).
Find past Sabotage Reports here: