State Sport: Jousting
[Photo of jouster]

The sport of jousting is the official sport of Maryland. Jousters compete by trying to catch a hanging ring on a lance while riding a horse.

In 1962, a law was enacted making jousting our State sport. The legislators felt that:

In Maryland, jousting is the sport of charging a horse at full gallop toward 3 suspended rings (hanging from Arches) spaced evenly down a 100 yard track. The
[Photo of jouster spearing suspended ring]
rider carries a long, fine tipped lance and attempts to "spear" the rings. The rings range in diameter from 1 3/4" down to 1/4. " This form of jousting is called the "ring tournament" and it is not like earlier forms of the sport where two riders fought against one another in either real or pretend fighting.

Today jousting competitions are held throughout Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia.

Click on the image to see a larger version
[Photo of jouster spearing suspended ring] [Photo of jouster spearing suspended ring] [Photo of jouster spearing suspended ring]
Photograps courtesy of the Governor's Press Office, State of Maryland

© Copyright October 16, 1997, Office of the Secretary of State.
Last Modified October 8, 2003.