Open Tournament

– Shot Putt
– 28lb weight for distance
– 16lb hammer
– 56lb weight for height and caber

By tradition a smooth, round stone from the riverbed is used, weighting approx. 16lbs. Such a stone is still often found outside many farmhouses in readiness for an impromptu competition. The stone, and now also a cast round ball or shot, is putted from behind a straight 4’6” long and 6” high called a trig. The throw is measured from the centre of the trig to the first mark made by the stone.

The Scots hammer has a wooden shaft and developed from throwing the blacksmith’s hammer or farm male ham- mers. Today’s hammer with its round head and whippy shaft was developed because the standard hammer broke so easily. No turning of the body is allowed. The thrower stands with his back to the trig and digs in with the aid of two 6” spikes with protrude from the front of his boots. The shaft is grasped firmly with hands made sticky with resin. He then swings the hammer round his head 3- 5 times and lets go.

The weight weighs 56lbs and is thrown over a bar. Three attempts are allowed at each height and failure to clear leads to elimination. The competitor stands underneath the bar, picks up the weight with one hand, swings it between his legs and then up and over the bar. If thrown correctly the weight narrowly misses the athlete on the way down.

The weight is a ball and chain with a handle on the end, weighing 28lbs. One hand only may be used. Nine feet is allowed for stepping back and this is marked with a peg. The thrower stands beside the peg facing the trig and swings the weight to the side and then round behind him. Letting the weight drag as far behind him as he can he then pivots round once, twice and on the third turn he heaves the weight round and throws it as far as he can.

Caber tossing started as a strength competition among woodmen to see who could turn the biggest tree over. Thus they started with a large tree and shortened it until someone tossed it successfully. A typical caber is a tree trunk weighing about 150lbs, 18 feet long and tapering from about 9” thick at one end to 5” thick at the other. The Caber
 is not tossed for distance but for style. The competition is judged on an imaginary clock face which the tosser creates as he completes the toss. The tosser runs up balancing the caber as best he can. When ready he stops and tosses. This point is taken as 6 o’clock. The caber describes an arc, lands end first and completes its fall to the ground. A perfect throw is one which goes straight over and lands at 12 o’clock. The judge usually runs behind the competitor as close as is safely possible, to judge the position of the caber on the ground relative to the run up. Here at Taynuilt we have a caber which has never been tossed successfully and there is a large money prize for the first person to do so.

You can enter the Heavy Events on the day or fill in the contact form below to book your place.

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