Dachshunds take to the track for ‘the shortest and longest race in town’

Promising a morning of ‘sausage goodness’, New Zealand’s annual Wiener Dog Derby returns on Saturday for the sixth straight year.

The event, which aims to set a record for the largest group of dachshunds ever seen at one location in Aotearoa, will include a costumed parade and dog races.

The races are divided into three categories – miniature sausages, standard-sized wieners, and “wannabe sausages” (other small dog breeds). There are prizes for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place puppies.

All competitors are expected to walk 20 meters from one handler at the start line to another at the finish line.

CONTINUE READING:
* Corgis race for glory at the prestigious annual event in Lower Hutt, Wellington
* Eight competed in the Lime Scooter Grand Prix
* Sausage Dogs sprint at the Auckland Doggy Derby

The handler at the finish line is permitted to encourage his dog “in any way he can” as long as he does not cross the finish line himself.

The sausage dogs Roxy and Rosie should magic their way to the top at the Vienna Dog Derby on Saturday.

Abigail Dougherty/Stuff

The sausage dogs Roxy and Rosie should magic their way to the top at the Vienna Dog Derby on Saturday.

Fia Salesa said her dog Ajax was “just like a racehorse but in sausage form”.

Salesa and Ajax have been training intensely ahead of the race but have been reluctant to reveal trade secrets.

“Ajax are a heavyweight in this race,” said Salesa.

“Four times a week we sprint down the at least 40 meter long driveway in the train.

Three-year-old reigning champion Frankenstein with her owner Lucy.

Abigail Dougherty/Stuff

Three-year-old reigning champion Frankenstein with her owner Lucy.

“We don’t need treats to attract this sprinting dog.”

Salesa had also prepared a special costume for Ajax which she said would help with his speed.

“His racing stripes are purple and gold.”

Joanne Collier, 49, has adopted her dog Rocket after seeing the spate of Wiener racing dogs at the event three years ago.

Joanne Collier and Rocket have been practicing in the field next to their house.

Abigail Dougherty/Stuff

Joanne Collier and Rocket have been practicing in the field next to their house.

“We are very happy to now have our first competitor.

“We’ve been training in the field near our home, so hopefully he has a chance,” she said.

Collier hoped to lure Rocket across the finish line with “treats and little squeaky toys.”

Event organizer Sarah-Lee Rashleigh said this year would be the biggest wiener dog derby yet.

Prizes can be expected for bitches in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

Abigail Dougherty/Stuff

Prizes can be expected for bitches in 1st, 2nd and 3rd place.

“We are really looking forward to the countdown to the shortest, longest and fastest race in town.

“This event is a hit year after year, but this year we’d like to spread the love of dachshunds across Auckland and reach a record number of participants.”

More than 90 dogs have already been registered from areas as far afield as Taupō and Whangārei, Rashleigh said.

Registrations are still open and will be open that day.

The derby takes place at The Flying Moa in Mount Wellington on Saturday.

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