Next month something strange is happening on Sark. This usually somnolent, car-free Channel Island is hosting one of Europe's strangest celebrations. From the 17th to the 19th of July, Sark will be home to the annual Sheep Racing Festival.

Located between between Guernsey and Jersey around 80 miles south of England, with a permanent population of just 600 or so inhabitants, Sark is better known for its peace, quiet and natural beauty. But on two afternoons every July, sheep racing takes over.

Sark, Channel Islands

Each day, six sheep – steered by their cloth-rabbit jockeys in colourful jerseys – take to the course six times. It's a 100-yard dash to victory, with straw bales to be hurdled along the way. And in true racing tradition, bets are placed on the potential winner.

You won't find Paddy Power here, though. Profits support the Professor Charles Saint Sark Medical Trust which helps to provide medical care on the island.

Sheep racing on Sark

When the races are over, spectators can retire to the "baa" for refreshments or indulge in an old-fashioned game of splat the rat. Come evening, festivities continue with live music.

It might be baa-rmy, but you can count us in.

Find out more about Sark on http://www.sark.co.uk. All images in this feature courtesy of VisitGuernsey.

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