After five previous attempts, The Bear was declared the winner of the 17th annual Contest at 11:56 on May 1, after a unanimous decision was handed down by the judges.
At the awards presentation, Rufus di Rafineschi, the Contest’s head judge, said it had been a difficult competition to adjudicate.
“The quality and range of toe-hairs this year was extraordinary and, happily, it made our job that much more difficult,” he said.
In the end, though, it was the “perfect formation” of the Bear’s toe-hairs, along with their “exceptional length and quality” that won the Bear top prize.
At a press conference after the prizes were awarded, the Bear fielded questions about his tenacity.
“I wasn’t going to let this one go,” he said, finally, after a fourth reporter asked why he had entered the Contest for the sixth time.
The Bear also praised his fellow competitors, heartily congratulating second and third prize winners, Richard “Rocky” Jerboa and Salamanca Q. Sloth.