JUNE 4, 2002

Those curious folk in Australia...

If you think Grand Prix racing is a can of worms - you may be right.

IF you think Grand Prix racing is a can of worms - you may be right. The humble garden worm today became what has been described as "a Formula 1 environment warrior" in a unique education program in Australia to promote water conservation, with 17 of the slippery sliders battling it out in the first Australian Worm Grand Prix in Melbourne.

The event coincided with the release of an interactive "Formula 1 Worm Racing Track" on the Internet aimed at providing environment tips on saving water at a time when Australia is facing a major drought. Children can race the worms across the computer screen on the "racetrack" by touching them with the cursor.

The program was launched at the new Melbourne Museum on the eve of World Environment Day. All major political parties in the state of Victoria (which already has real F1 and motorcycle GPs each year), selected Melbourne suburban councils, various other authorities and sponsors were represented in the race for the earthworms on a circular bed of soil, with victory going to the Mannigham Council's 'Worminator".

"Worminator" was the only known finisher, with other entrants going underground. Still, that was an improvement on a trials last week when the entire field curled up without completing the eight inch course...