Stay connected

Local man competes in Highland games before helping break world record

A FROME resident competed in the World Masters Highland Games and then contributed to breaking a Guinness World Record – all in the same weekend.

Duncan Steward is an experienced competitor at the Highland Games having competed in over ten games in as many years. This year he not only took on competitors from all over the world in the physically challenging World Masters Highland Games but he also joined in a successful Guinness World Record attempt for the ‘most people tossing cabers simultaneously.’

In total 66 people managed to do so, beating the previous record of 52 set in Canada. The new world record followed a successful games for Duncan who competed well against competitors who can dedicate more time to training. He was in the V55 male category which included  over 100 competitors from around the world.

The championships are one of a number of Highland Games events held throughout the year in Scotland as a way of celebrating the nation’s Celtic culture and heritage. Staged as part of the Homecoming Scotland 2014 celebrations, the event was one of the major highlights of a two-month Highland Homecoming Festival.

An extra event was added on the final day – the world record attempt.

The caber toss is a traditional feature at a games, which sees competitors toss a large tapered pole called a “caber”.

The caber is usually made from a larch tree and is typically 19 feet 6 inches (5.94 m) tall and weighs 175 pounds (79 kg). The primary objective is to toss the caber so that it turns end over end, falling directly away from the thrower in the ‘12 o’clock’ position.

Speaking to the Frome Times Duncan said, “It was a good event and I enjoyed it. To help break a Guinness World Record is an added bonus and it was nice to be part of it. Many people don’t realise the caber has to land in the twelve-o-clock position, so pointing away from you – so it is much tougher than people think.

“I particularly enjoy the hammer, weight over the bar and caber. I can’t train as much or as hard as some of the other competitors so it is difficult, but I enjoyed the weekend and I am sure I will be back competing there again. ”