17 décembre 2009

NEW: Your blog in English

Thanks to Mary PINET who wasn't afraid of translating my naughty plays on words, most articles are now summed up or adapted in English. I If you don't understand French, just click on the « English » tag on the right. And enjoy the Bressuire Highland Games!

12 novembre 2009

Champion advice for the new Bressuire team

Bressuire now boasts its own Highland Games Dream Team. On Saturday November 7th a team of eight with Belkacem Smahi as their leader got off to a flying start under the guidance of none other than Woult Zijlstra. Woult, who has won the Bressuire Highland Games twice, let them into a few secrets as to the best way to put the shot, throw the hammer and toss the caber. Nothing like enlightened advice rather than a shot in the dark! So may Luzerche be warned! At the next Games, their Bressuire opponents will be throwing their... [Lire la suite]
10 octobre 2009

Weight over the bar: a Hansome ovation

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09 septembre 2009

Light weight for distance

After the stone and the hammer, another duo: the heavy weight throw on Saturday won by Hans Lolkema and the lighter version of Sunday. Contrary to expectations, Lolkema did not win “hands” down but was beaten by Craig Sinclair by 37 cm. A not so close shave for the master of shavings…  
24 août 2009

The heavy stone put

Heavy-going this poetry stuff, You must all have had enough, So into prose we will relapse, And come back to rhyming later on perhaps With due respect for tradition, Sunday afternoon began with the heavy stone put. Having made light work of the light stone put on Saturday, Gregor Edmunds was the heavy favourite to win what was for Bressuire a new event. A different weight, a different method. This time no swinging around for impetus, no run up. The athlete adopts the Braemar position, performs a standing put while staying... [Lire la suite]
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19 août 2009

Tossing the caber: qualifications

  The spectators looked on with breath all bated – This was the event they had all awaited: The qualifications of tossing the caber When each man strives to out toss his neighbour. Alas, halfway through the proceedings The larch trunk lay on the ground a-bleeding! What could be done? The caber was broken! But before long Judge Webster had spoken: All contestants through to the final would go, Heralding for Sunday an even more exciting show!

16 août 2009

Unofficial event: beer barrel over the bar

  The technique for this unique Bressuire event is similar to that used in the weight over the bar event.The contestant stands with his back to the bar, swings the 27.5 kilo barrel between his legs for momentum, lets it go up and over the bar and then barrels along out of the way. A barrel of fun  “Roll out the barrel – let’s have a barrel of fun!” So the song goes and fun it may be for the spectators. But it’s a source of soul-searching for the athletes. Should they use one or two hands? A vertical hold or a horizontal... [Lire la suite]
16 août 2009

Event 3 : Heavy weight for distance

  The heavy weight for distance – another highly impressive Highland Games event. The weight is shaped like a milk churn equipped with chain and handle.   The contestant holds the weight by the handle, churns around two or three times as in Olympic hammer and discus throwing, and then releases the weight at maximum momentum.   Given the total weight of 56 pounds this is tantamount to whirling and hurling a full gas cylinder. Three contestants managed a distance of more than ten meters! Amazing! But... [Lire la suite]
14 août 2009

Event 2 : The heavy hammer throw

Legend has it that this event originated with Scottish smithies who, not content with pounding the hammer on the anvil all week, would keep their hand in on Sundays by seeing how far they could throw it!  Nowadays Smithies and Smiths are as common as Browns and Joneses.But when it comes to hurling the 22 pound heavy hammer at the end of its 1.27m handle, your best bet is to be called Edmonds or Sinclair... ...and preferably Craig SINCLAIR who, with a distance of 34.65m, fell just one meter short of Brian AITKINS’s 2007... [Lire la suite]
12 août 2009

Light stone put

    The stone used for this, the first event of the Games, was found and polished in Largeasse (no comment), a town fittingly situated a stone’s throw from Bressuire.   They say a rolling stone gathers no moss. And although this 16 pound rock did little rolling, it certainly had no time to gather moss. Indeed, it hurtled through the air and landed no fewer than 45 times as the 15 contenders (9 European and 6 French) were each entitled to three goes.   The best distance was achieved by Gregor... [Lire la suite]