The Wayfarer - More tales of the unique sporting endeavours enjoyed by Scots

Last week I delved into the sports which emanated from Scotland and spread out around the world.

I particularly pointed out how well the small country of Scotland did at curling during the recent winter Olympics.

The fact that the Scots took the sport to Canada who picked up both the gold medals is also a feather in their cap.

There are of course many more Scottish sports to consider such as the Highland Games which have travelled abroad particularly to Canada and America.

These games include putting the stone, tug of war, throwing a Scottish hammer and tossing the caber.

However the oldest sporting trophy in the UK is believed to be ‘The Musselburgh Silver Arrow’ which is competed for annually by the Royal Company of Archers. This very ancient company forms the Sovereign’s Bodyguard in Scotland and the trophy dates back to 1603.

This competition does not seem to be reported in the press so I am unaware of who currently holds the trophy, but I do know that to be a member of this exclusive company you have to be selected by the sovereign.

If you have ever been to a Royal Garden Party at Holyrood House you would have seen the Royal Company of Archers on parade.

However one of Scotland’s most unusual and unique sporting events is held in a slate quarry on Easdale Island off the coast of the Firth of Lorne.

This venue is for the World Stone Skimming Championship held annually on the last Sunday in September and is open to all, no age barrier and any level of skill may enter. So there you are a unique championship which is still at home in Scotland.

Horseracing is no stranger to Scotland with the Ayr Racecourse being our premier venue for the sport.

Horseracing in Ayr goes back a long way to perhaps times long forgotten, when farmers were happy to put a bawbee or two on their own nag, or even someone else’s if it looked that good.

This is where the Scottish Grand National is held along with the Ayr Gold Cup which is thought to be the richest sprint handicap in Europe.

So before we leave this topic be proud of Scotland’s sporting heritage which it has freely spread around the world.

But remember whenever you go abroad on holiday, no matter if you are a golfer or not, just seek out the local golf courses and think of the Scots who brought this sporting gift to the uninitiated.

See you next week.