Knights of old time joust through the Olde English Faire

By Chad Weber

June 16, 2012 Updated Oct 26, 2013 at 1:30 AM CDT


 Some people grow up wanting to be doctors, lawyers, or astronauts. But for Shane Adams it was always a knight of armor.

Or a Knight of Valor to be more specific. Besides being the host of History Channel's Full Metal Jousting, Adams started the Knights of Valor to show people what real contact jousting is all about.

"Your seeing the real thing, said Adams. "Your not seeing a medieval tournament. You're not seeing a choreographed dinner show. What your seeing the real sport of full contact jousting."

Adams said the full contact sport is recognized as one of the world's most violent.

"Just imagine riding with 85 to 160 pounds of armor, wielding a 11 foot solid wooden lance while riding a 2,000 pound war horse going down that joust list knowing that you have to strike your opponent and knowing that at any time he can strike you right back," said Adams. "Jousting, how dangerous can it really be"

Perhaps that's what Full Metal contestant James Fairclough II thought.

"I really didn't think it was going to be all that difficult," said Fairclough. "I've ridden my entire life and I said no problem. Put a suit of armor on and get a stick and hit somebody. But you put 140 pounds of armor on and close the helmet and come head on at a guy going 30 miles an hour. It changes the game completely. I've been in a car accident before, crashed into a tree at 44 miles per hour. It's nothing, nothing compared to this."

And as you might have guessed it, injuries are part of the job risk.

"In the sport of jousting if you make a mistake your going to break a bone or your going to get seriously hurt," said Adams. "There are many broken hands. There are many dislocations. But you know, there's a lot of injuries in high school football too."

And these riders feel they are just as much athletes as anyone playing football, basketball, or any professional sport.

"This is a real sport and we're here to stay, we need the respect we deserve," said James Fairclough.

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