11 Things I Learned By Attending A Politicians’ Pancake Race

It’s pancake day, pancake day, p-p-p-p-pancake day. And a great excuse for politicians to look silly.

1. These men normally decide which laws are passed by the UK parliament. But this morning they were practicing their pancake flipping skills.

It’s Shrove Tuesday, which means it’s the annual parliamentary pancake race to promote mental health charity Rehab.

This is Lord Addington and Lord Mawson warming up.

2. They race against the UK’s political journalists. Who, as this clip shows, are universally rubbish at flipping pancakes and therefore always lose.

Yes, that’s BBC political editor Nick Robinson second from left.

“The politicians always cheat,” Sky News political correspondent Sophy Ridge told BuzzFeed, before muttering something about MPs not flipping pancakes properly and barging people out of the way.

3. And the third team consists of members of parliament. Who are, basically, just a bit bawdy.

Colne Valley MP Jason McCartney seemed really excited to be there and kept making jones about having a “crepe pancake” and suggesting “they go for another toss” to universal groans.

4. This man is Julian Huppert, MP for Cambridge, warming up for the big event. He is amazing at this.

He’s also winner of the Parliamentary Beard of the Year, one of the other “big four” Westminster contests where politicians are allowed to act the fool.

(The remaining two are Westminster Dog of the Year and Cat of the Year.)

5. It’s a relay race, with every runner wearing a chef’s apron, comedy hat and carrying a frying pan. Just to make them look as daft as possible.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Despite being told to constantly flip the pancakes to head height everyone cheats and does a sort of stumble and half-hearted flip every so often. Well, it is politics.

6. You’ll never believe what Lord Kennedy saw when he looked at the bottom of his frying pan.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/Press Association Images

PURE TERROR SPREAD ACROSS HIS FACE.

7. Channel 4 political editor Gary Gibbon plumped for a gentlemanly flipping action.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Precise and accurate but never going to win the race.

KEEP YOUR EYE ON THE PANCAKE, SOPHY.

10. But Lord Bilimoria – the man who founded Cobra Beer – really wanted his team to win.

Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire/Press Association Images

And thanks to his efforts, they did.

11. And this is how a Lord celebrates winning a pancake race. (Clue: involves leaping.)

Well done. Now, back to parliament with you.

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