- "The Boonta is far more dangerous than any amateur race I've flown!"
- ―Ben Quadinaros
The Boonta Eve Classic was the largest annual podrace in the galaxy. Held on the planet of Tatooine, it was hosted by the Hutts to commemorate the Boonta's Eve holiday. Located just outside Mos Espa, the Boonta race course started in the Mos Espa Grand Arena. There, thousands of spectators would congregate, hoping to see their favored racer win, to catch a glimpse of a spectacular collision, or to win a fortune gambling on the race's outcome.
The formal race ceremony started with a parade of flag-bearers; each carried a racer's distinctive emblem, and lined up before the starting grid. Once the bearers cleared the grid, the Podracers' massive engines would roar to life, seemingly anxious at the chance to soar at speeds exceeding 700 kilometers-per-hour.
The Mos Espa circuitEdit
The Mos Espa course mostly turned around Ben's Mesa. It blazed out of the arena onto the Starlite Flats, an easy stretch of desert where aggressive Podracers jockeyed for strong starting positions. The racers had to line up in single file to enter the curving canyon that cuts through the Waldo Flats. This opened up into Mushroom Mesa, a rocky expanse dominated by immense bulbous rock formations. Metta Drop, a sudden escarpment, dropped the racers onto Ebe Crater Valley, where they again had to navigate a narrow opening (the Notch) to enter Beggar's Canyon.
The race then continued onto a length of desert plains abutting the Dune Sea. One of the most hazardous areas—Arch Canyon—forced pilots to maneuver through stone wickets before entering another series of canyons, including The Whip, Jag Crag Gorge, and the subterranean Laguna Cave. Emerging from the caves, the pilots careened through the tight Canyon Dune Turn, known to be a campsite for vengeful Sand People.
Podracers that survived potshots from the Sand People then had to dodge the rocky obstacles in Bindy Bend before entering the last stretch of canyon, which included the Coil, Jett's Chute, and the Corkscrew.
Exiting the Corkscrew via the Devil's Doorknob, the pilots emerged onto the Hutt Flats, a broad featureless expanse that led back to the arena. This entire circuit represented one lap, and the Boonta Eve Classic required three laps for completion, with an average time of 5 minutes, 20 seconds for each lap.
Commentaries were made by Fodesinbeed, a popular commentator in the sport.
Renaissance under GardullaEdit
The Boonta Eve Classic circuit was an ancient course that had fallen on hard times by 67 BBY. With the financial support of Hego Damask, however, Gardulla the Hutt restored the course as part of an effort to seize control of Tatooine, creating a new Podracing circuit that would rival those of Muunilinst and Malastare.
The race of 32 BBYEdit
- "It's Skywalker!"
- ―Fodesinbeed as Anakin crosses the finishing line.
During the events precipitating the Battle of Naboo, young Anakin Skywalker participated in a fateful Boonta Eve Classic race. Sponsored by Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, Anakin entered his custom-built podracer into the cutthroat competition. Even though the odds favored the scheming Sebulba as a victor, the Force was with Anakin, and he came in first. It was a stunning upset to the longstanding Dug champion. He became the first human to win the race. Anakin won more than the race; the young slave also won his freedom.
- 1st place: Anakin Skywalker
( 15.42:655 ; 858 km/h)
- 2nd place: Gasgano
(15.48:557 ; 850 km/h)
- 3rd place: Aldar Beedo
(15.52:108 ; 845 km/h)
- 4th place: Ebe Endocott
(16.04:994 ; 827 km/h)
- 5th place: Elan Mak
(16.10:737 ; 819 km/h)
- 6th place: Boles Roor
(16.42:473 ; 781 km/h)
Boonta Eve Classic (1 BBY)Edit
Despite the Empire's ban on Podracing, the Boonta Eve Classic continued to be an ongoing tradition on Tatooine. During one race taking place during 1 BBY, a Star Tours-owned StarSpeeder 1000, the Star Tours Flight 1401, accidentally participated in the race shortly after escaping from Spaceport THX1138 due to an Imperial raid. Several podracers ended up destroyed in the hectic events before it left. The Boonta Eve Classic was popular enough that the Star Tours agency had a lot of passengers leaving for Tatooine for that very reason.
Many years later, Han Solo and Leia Organa Solo visited the site of the race while on a mission on Tatooine and even purchased a holocube of Anakin Skywalker from his friend, Kitster Banai, photographed shortly after his victory. The Boonta Eve Classic was also featured in one of Shmi Skywalker Lars's diary entries that Leia found on the old Skywalker homestead.
Behind the scenesEdit
In the audio commentary on the Episode I DVD, visual effects supervisor John Knoll points out that in a shot of the scene of Sebulba riding just behind Anakin, with Anakin's head nearly in the connecting current between the pod engines, it is possible to see that Sebulba is not present in his pod.
- LEGO Star Wars: The Video Game
- LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga
- LEGO Star Wars: Anakin: Space Pilot
- LEGO Star Wars: Microfighters – "Episode 1: Bantha Shakes"