Carluke YFC men’s team victorious in RHS tug of war event

Pulling their weight...Carluke YFC men's team won the regionals, beating local rivals Biggar YFC and went on to win the spoils in the final.
Pulling their weight...Carluke YFC men's team won the regionals, beating local rivals Biggar YFC and went on to win the spoils in the final.

There’s more to the Royal Highland Show than livestock, food and rural life.

It also provides a platform for our young farmers’ clubs to show their prowess in the tug of war championships.

Second place...for a delighted Biggar YFC women's team in the RHS finals.

Second place...for a delighted Biggar YFC women's team in the RHS finals.

For the grand final of the Scottish Association of Young Farmers (SAYFC) Tug of War competition is also staged at RHS.

Always an epic batttle of passion, power and skill, it is particularly so when local clubs come face to face.

For the last seven years, Biggar YFC has won the coveted men’s title, last year beating Carluke in the final.

But the tables turned this year and Carluke YFC men’s team came home victors.

Third prize...for the Carluke YFC women's team at the annual showcase.

Third prize...for the Carluke YFC women's team at the annual showcase.

And the women’s team also fared well – securing third prize at the event, with the Biggar YFC women’s team coming second.

Having won the regional heats, Carluke YFC’s men’s coach Alan Brodie had high hopes for his team which remained unchanged for the big event on Saturday – namely Jamie Gibson, Jack Young, Douglas Frame, Andrew Mcgregor, Adam Lindsay and Mark Hunter.

And his confidence was well placed when they saw off a strong challenge from Callander YFC in the grand finale in front of an enthusiastic RHS crowd.

Alan has an excellent pedigree for training tug of war teams; he was a member of the Indoor Tug of War World Championship team for six years.

It is his third year as coach for Carluke YFC men’s team but his first major win with the local lads.

Alan said: “Four of the six men were in the team last year when we were runners up in the final pull.

“I think that gave them an appetite to go for gold.

“A men’s weight limit of 500kg has also helped even the teams up, making it a much more open competition.

“The whole team trained hard for the event and richly deserved their success.”

It is years since Carluke won the SAYFC Tug of War – so the men’s team winning and the ladies’ team coming third is a great achievement.

When asked what gave the club a winning edge, Alan added: “It’s a combination of things that come together on the day – tactics, style, stamina and strength.”

The tug of war event was sponsored by Davidson and Robertson, an innovative and growing firm of rural surveyors and consultants founded in 1891, which has offices across Scotland, including Lanark.

The firm helped build momentum and excitement for this year’s tug of war with a social media campaign #pullingfortheteam.

It focused on the teams battling for the trophies, helping to build up support.

Martin Hall, the firm’s managing director, said: “What an occasion! There was a huge audience and the tension was palpable. It was one of the best tug of war finals we’ve seen.

“Many of those taking part for the YFC clubs have been #pullingfortheteam on the international stage – and we congratulate the National Tug of War squad for selecting team members from this excellent YFC training ground.”

Davidson and Robertson has already confirmed its ongoing sponsorship for the tug of war event and #pullingfortheteam.

There’s little doubt Carluke and Biggar will once again be in the mix at the RHS showground next year – but who will win the spoils?

Biggar will be determined to prise the trophy back but will they be able to grapple it from Carluke’s grip?

We’ll have to wait and see but it’s certain to be a great event ... so watch this space!

* Ayr YFC won the ladies’ final for the ninth time, with Biggar in second and Carluke in third place.

In the men’s final, Carluke YFC were victorious, followed by Callander and Fife and Kinross District.

Other finalists included Bathgate JAC, Biggar YFC, Durris JAC, Keith & Dist. YFC (4th), Mauchline YFC, New Deer YFC, Strathearn JAC.