by Thom Van Vleck
Recently USAWA members Dave Glasgow, Chad Ullom, and Thom Van Vleck went to Inverness, Scotland to attend the Masters World Champs of Highland Games. Unfortunately, Dean Ross was unable to attend. Dean was the last person to have attended EVERY SINGLE MWC since it’s inception a dozen years ago. Larry Traub was in attendance to watch and cheer us on. Dave and Larry had brought their wives along….I was stuck rooming with Chad…..
The event was great fun and I’ve already talked about the Guinness caber toss record. This was a three day event and it worked out where I could help Chad in the morning sessions when he threw and he could help me in the afternoon sessions. I know for a fact Chad helped me out and I hope he found me helpful as well. We would video each other throwing and assess mistakes and changes.
Chad was 4th in what I would call one of the toughest 40-44 age groups I’ve ever seen. He had former champ Mike Dickens to deal with as well as 6’10” Tommy DeBruijn. Chad did extremely well against a field of some 20 throwers. His best event was the caber toss where he was one of only three in his group to turn the caber. He was in a dead tie going into the third and final attempt and ended up 2nd by a fraction. I have to say in my opinion I thought he won it….but they didn’t let me judge! It was that close.
I was in the 50-54 age group and I was dealing with two of the all time Scottish greats….Mark McDonald and Allister Gunn. Both former pros and it was no contest with 18 throwers in my group about who would be in the top two. Allister pulled out a close victory and the rest of use were really contending for 3rd. I was very pleased to have my 2nd best finish ever with a 5th. However, what really made my trip was winning the Weight Over Bar event for the 4th time at the World’s. I really thought I had no chance at beating the two legendary Scots but it ended up being my day! Chad was a big help spotting for me and keeping me focused. I get deservedly kidded for focusing on this event but I love it and I won’t apologize for enjoying my win even if it’s just one event!
I know Dave was in a very tough group. It was great to see him in Scotland with Larry. Dave’s best events were the hammers where he placed 4th in both the light and heavy. He was also 5th in the Heavy weight for distance. Dave was in the 60-64 age group…..Which had THREE former or current World Champs in his group….by far the toughest in my opinion relative to the competition and age. I think Dave would be at the top had he not blown both quads a few years back. I think he’s an amazing story recovering from that injury and coming back to throw well enough to contend for the podium.
Next year the World’s are slated for St. Louis, Missouri…back in the USA! Looking forward to it all ready!