SpongeBob SquarePants

The Great Snail Race

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Episode Information
The Great Snail Race
Season №: 3
Episode №: 55a
Airdate: January 24, 2003
Sister episode(s): "Mid-Life Crustacean"
Writer(s): Paul Tibbitt
Kent Osborne
Joe Liss (TV version)[1]
Merriwether Williams (DVD version)
Storyboard Artist(s): Chuck Klein
Carson Kugler
Caleb Meurer
William Reiss
Storyboard: Paul Tibbitt
Kent Osborne
Animation: Andrew Overtoom
Creative: Derek Drymon
See all credits for this episode.
Previous: "Ugh"
Next: "Mid-Life Crustacean"
List of episodes

"The Great Snail Race" is a SpongeBob SquarePants episode from season three. In this episode, Bikini Bottom holds a snail race.



SpongeBob wakes up, as well as waking up Gary. He tells the world he is ready. He sees Squidward getting a package in the mail, with the mailfish erroneously pronouncing his last name as "Tennisballs". SpongeBob questions that Squidward's last name is "Tentacles", and Patrick says poor guy. He opens the cage, which contains a snail named Snellie. Patrick checks out Squidward's new snail. SpongeBob sees this and tells Gary that he has a new little playmate. However, Squidward immediately protests and explains that Snellie is a purebred of the highest pedigree, and that she is going to be entered in the Bikini Bottom Snail Race on Sunday and she will win it.

SpongeBob says that he can't enter Gary because Sunday is laundry day. Squidward then tells SpongeBob that he can't enter Gary because Gary is a "mutt", which offends SpongeBob. He asks what makes Squidward think Gary couldn't win. Squidward says the paper. Patrick reads Snellie's pedigree certificate and misreads Squidward's name as "Tentpoles", which makes Squidward angry, yet again. SpongeBob decides to enter Gary into the race. Patrick also decides to enter into the competition.

SpongeBob (wearing a play mustache and a coach's outfit) tells Gary to start training now. Sandy is walking and decides to kick SpongeBob's butt tomorrow, but she doesn't know why. SpongeBob makes a shake with weird ingredients and gives it to Gary, but Gary runs to the living room. Patrick shows SpongeBob his snail, which is a rock. Patrick says he has nerves of steel. SpongeBob decides to train Gary as hard as he can.

On the day of the race, Gary is exhausted from SpongeBob's brutal training. During the race, his eyes and shell explode, revealing a car engine, and he spirals out of control like a race car. SpongeBob, seeing the error of his ways, tells Gary that he can stop now, but Gary keeps on going. SpongeBob runs onto the track, which the announcer says that it's an "automatic disqualification". Gary hits the wall and explodes completely, and then an upset SpongeBob runs up to him and embraces him, crying.

Snellie, who is almost at the finish line, turns around to help Gary, and the two instantly fall in love. Squidward is shocked at this and walks onto the track, and SpongeBob says to him, "Looks like you and me are in-laws, eh, Squidward?". Squidward then sees that, much to his surprise, Patrick's rock won the race. Squidward is very upset by this, but Patrick then tells Squidward that he had the trophy engraved to him, and gives it to him, knowing how much Squidward wanted to win. Squidward thanks Patrick, but then reads the trophy, which reads "The 1st place Snail Racing cup presented to Squidward... TORTELLINI?!" He groans and says "Will I ever win?", and they all start laughing and then Sandy appears onscreen kicking SpongeBob yelling "That's for yesterday, SquarePants!".


Deleted Scene

  • There is a deleted scene in which Sandy is arrested for kicking SpongeBob's butt. This was cut for unknown reasons.


 ) Associated production music
 ) Original music
 ) SpongeBob music

  Fight! Fight! Fight! (a) - Will Schaefer [title card]
  William Tell Overture - Gioachino Rossini [SpongeBob playing bugle]
  Dancing the Hula - Kapono Beamer [Squidward's new snail]
  Appalachian Banjo Duel - Larry Hochman ["Gary's a mutt."]
  ? - Nicolas Carr [Gary imagines himself watching TV]
  Meet the Family - Alan Hawkshaw [Gary imagines himself watching TV]
  Deadline - Sam Spence ["Looks like we're gonna start our training now, ladies."]
  Astronauts March - Sam Spence [protein shake]
  Meet the Family - Alan Hawkshaw [Gary watching TV]
  Pell-Mell - Sam Spence [sprints]
  Meet the Family - Alan Hawkshaw [Gary watching TV again]
  Steve's March - Sam Spence [training montage]
  Hawaiian Link (b) - Richard Myhill [Gary's exhausted]
  The Zodiac - David Lindup [at the stadium]
  Fight! Fight! Fight! (a) - Will Schaefer [pre-game ceremony]
  Charge - Will Schaefer ["The torch is lit! Let the race begin!"]
  Open - Tom Hedden [pep talks]
  The Wild Bunch - Sam Spence [race starts]
  Dramatic Cue (g) - Ronald Hanmer [SpongeBob runs onto the track]
  Hawaiian Cocktail - Richard Myhill ["Oh, Gary, I'm sorry!"]
  Romeo & Juliet Overture - Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky, Fiachra Trench [Snellie comforts Gary]
  Miss World (c) - Tony Kinsey [ending]


  • "The Great Snail Race" was ranked #35 during the Best Day Ever event on November 9–10, 2006.



  • Saturday and Sunday
  • 2 hours later
  • The music played during the title card and when Lightning Larry is heading to light the torch would later become the tune to Now that We're Men from The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie.
  • Running Gag: Someone mispronouncing Squidward's last name, and Patrick thinking his rock is a snail.
  • The mayor in this episode is also the 1st mayor of New Kelp City in "What Ever Happened to SpongeBob?".
  • A snail identical to Snellie appears in "The Sponge Who Could Fly" as Mrs. Puff's snail. However, she states that, "I've had her since I was a little girl," meaning that this could not be Snellie. Also in "Gary in Love" Snellie appears as Mary. This could be because Snellie is likely a character model.
  • SpongeBob: "...raw eggs 'cause they're cliche," is a clear reference to Rocky (coincidentally, Patrick's pet rock is named Rocky).
  • This episode was the only episode from the Hillenburg era (1999–2004) and season 3 on the "Where's Gary"? DVD.
  • This is the first episode to air in 2003.
  • This is the episode where SpongeBob found out Squidward's last name.
  • SpongeBob's unicycle, first seen in "Boating School", appears in this episode.
  • SpongeBob shouts "Move it! Move it!" like Lt. Harris in Police Academy or like Sereant Carter from the television series Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.
  • This is the second time SpongeBob had rivalry with Squidward. The first time was in the episode, "Employee of the Month", while the third time will be in "SpongeBob vs. The Patty Gadget".
  • In the Brazilian dubbing, Squidward's last name "Tentáculos" is misspelled "Tem Tacos" (have clubs) by the mailman and "Tem Óculos" (have eyeglasses) by Patrick. Snellie is called "Caracolina", a combination of "Caracol" (snail) and "Carolina" (a given name).
  • In a recent airing (4/18/2012) at the Philippines (a single episode) the credits are different form that of the original because it uses the credits from a future episode, Boating Buddies.
  • In early Russian airings Chocolate With Nuts was aired first and The Great Snail Race was second; however, in later Russian airings, the order of the two episodes is changed.
  • This is another episode to show SpongeBob as the main antagonist.
  • There is a book of the same name based on this episode.
  • The band at the Snail Race is wearing the same uniform as The Super Band in Band Geeks
  • It's possible SpongeBob's mustache in this episode is a parody of Béla Károlyi's.

Cultural References

  • "Lightning Larry Luciano" might be a reference to the mobster "Lucky Luciano".


  • Nat could've been arrested for illegally taking over as the host.
  • If you would look at Fred closely in the audience, he's missing his pants.
  • When SpongeBob runs to Gary, his hat and mustache are gone.
  • Gary crashes into a wall and is still on the track. However, when the race begins, the track is in the center of the stadium, far from the walls.
  • SpongeBob was wearing red pants, but in the stadium, there is a close-up where Gary is in the floor and SpongeBob's pants are blue.
  • When Patrick was standing on Squidward's neck, you couldn't see his legs out the window.
  • Gary couldn't leave tire tracks as he doesn't have wheels with tires.
  • It was shown that Gary crashed into the wall, however when SpongeBob ran out to get him, he was in the center of the track.
  • There are only 3 lanes in the track however when Gary was losing control, you could see that there were more.
  • It is unknown how Rocky won.
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