Welcome to another edition of Marble Rally! This is my first time recapping one of the illustrious sporting events known as Jelle’s Marble Runs, as Merve is retiring from the position after pulling many, many new fans into the fray (myself included). I’m your lovable sometimes-host, April, starting in rotation on these recaps with Indy and Lutair.
After an exciting first race that saw Crazy Cat’s Eye, Cool Moody, and Marbly McMarbleface finish atop the podium, our competitors took to the sands in some iffy conditions for the second contest. Sand conditions last time resulted in six marbles going off course, and this match is no different. Poor course conditions really put an emphasis on staying on the track, and anywhere there are pileups among the racers mean huge risks of hopping (or collapsing) the walls. It only takes 40 seconds for four of our challengers to fall off course–including last race’s victor and third-place finisher–and they are joined by two more later in the race.
Due to the difficulty of navigating the peloton, the top racers in this one are determined early on. After jumping out to a lead right out of the gate, Cool Moody and Ducktape make sure to keep out of the fracas and have a much easier go at the course as a result. By the time the aforementioned pileup clears, Superball and Ghost Plasma have joined them in the forward guard. It turns into a four marble race within the first minute and stays that way until the final gun.
Through the second and third sectors of the race, it looks like Superball has a commanding lead, only to see Ghost Plasma and Ducktape cut down its advantage on the final straightaway. Ducktape, especially, uses a very physical style to knock Ghost Plasma and Superball into suboptimal positions. In the end, Superball is able to maintain just enough of a lead to earn a first place finish, with the other two podium finishers less than a second behind.
- Superball’s first place finish doesn’t stop Cool Moody from taking the top spot in the overall standings, although only one point separates the two. Crazy Cat’s Eye’s DNF drops them out of medal position to fourth.
- A whopping ten different marbles have recorded a DNF through two races. It is especially unfortunate for Blazing Fireball and Cobra, who have yet to see a finish line in 2020.
- I love the chutzpah of Ducktape, showing enough confidence to bang with elite competitors like Superball and Ghost Plasma despite being a relative unknown, previously recording a poor showing in 2018 and failing to qualify in 2019.
- Announcer extraordinaire Greg Woods mentioned a budding rivalry between these marbles and their counterparts in Marbula One. Perhaps the kernel of some kind of interdisciplinary competition? I, for one, am all for the idea.
- Presentation notes: In all of these Sand Marble Rally videos, I personally enjoy the wide shots rather than the tight looks that only feature the lead marbles. Not only does it show more of what is going on with all the racers, but I find the contrast on the zoomed-out shots to be much easier on my eyes.
Timestamp 0:29, Roldo is in the lower right hand corner. Definitely not “easy” because its only present for a second or two and the Youtube progress bar blocks the view if you look at the wrong time!