CINCINNATI – Calling all Queen City go-kart racers and video game players – "Let's a go!"
Mushroom Rally, a touring, real-life version of the classic "Super Mario Kart" video game series, will roll into Cincinnati from June 15-22 next year.
For those who haven't played a video game in the past three decades, Japanese company Nintendo first introduced "Super Mario Kart" in 1992 on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The game pit popular characters such as Luigi, Princess Peach and Bowser, along with the title character Mario from "Super Mario" against one another in a variety of go-kart races.
Nintendo has since produced thirteen versions of the title, which has sold more than 100 million copies worldwide.
Mushroom Rally began as a touring event in Australia that pit drivers against one another in Mario-inspired go-karts. Cincinnati will be one of 16 tour stops for the rally's inaugural visit to the United States.
The U.S. tour will begin next March in Los Angeles. A total of 20 winning racers from across the country will then compete in a capstone go-kart race later in the year hosted in Las Vegas.
According to the Mushroom Rally's website, there are three ways to earn one of the top 20 spots: have the fastest lap time in the city where you compete; collect the most stars in a city; or be lucky enough to have your name drawn from a lottery. Entry into the lottery is included with each ticket purchased to participate in a city's Mushroom Rally.
The rally's organizers also provide costumes for participating drivers.
Individuals must be at least 14-years-old and 55-inches tall to participate in the Mushroom Rally, according to the race website. There is a maximum weight of 300 pounds and an approximate maximum height of six-feet-seven-inches as well.
The Mushroom Rally is not a street race and will take place on a controlled track. The location for Cincinnati's race is listed as "secret" on the rally's website.