Catterline Gala Weekend

What a fantastic weekend that was! A huge thank you to everyone who helped to make the 2006 Catterline Gala such a great success, from Talent in the Tent on Friday evening right through to the Cartie Challenge on Sunday afternoon, and to all the businesses, organisations and individuals that supported us with raffle prizes, banner sponsorship, time, equipment and in so many other ways.

The weekend started on Friday evening with our very first "Talent in the Tent" show. Performers both young and not so young got a chance to show their stuff in front of a warm and supportive audience, and a great time was had by all. The audience and the acts alike were lubricated, courtesy of Robert Lindsay and The Creel Inn, by four fine real ales plus a selection of wines and soft drinks. In an evening packed with memorable acts there were so many highlights that it is impossible to pick anything for a special mention. However, I think the image of Anne-Marie and the chicken is going to stay fresh in everyones' minds for a long time to come.
The traditional Saturday afternoon gala had a bit of a circus theme, and was opened by champion curler and guest of honour Jackie Lockhart in appropriate style with a ceremonial custard pie-ing of gala committee member Stephen Hall. From then on it was fun and games all the way, with a fabulous display of circus skills by Urban Circus being the centrepiece. Other attractions included stalls, bouncy castle, pole jousting, burgers, tug of war and of course the legendary teas and cakes. There was also a brand new event - the Cartie Sprint - which saw teams pushing the carties made for the Cartie Challenge around the field as fast as they could. The day was finished with the Lucky Duck Chuck, where 500 plastic ducks were flung from a trebuchet to see which one went the furthest, with the winner receiving £100. Unlike last year, however, that wasn't quite the end. After chucking the ducks the trebuchet was loaded up one more time, but this time it was with lollipops. The resulting scramble of small people as the sweets fell like rain over the field was a sight to behold.
Sunday saw the second Catterline Cartie Challenge, where home made soap box carties compete for the honour and glory of raising the Connons Shield for the fastest descent of the brae from The Creel Inn the harbour. This year's course was quite different from last year, and featured a revised "Slammer" corner at the top of the course designed to force the carties to judge their speed and line very carefully. The "Slammer", named after the cartie "Tequila Slammer" that crashed there so spectacularly in 2005, soon made its presence felt when it claimed the first three carties ([1] [2] [3]). The teams quickly realised that this was a course they needed to respect, and they adjusted their race strategies to adapt. The competition was intense and the lead changed several times, but in the end "Once a fortnight is plenty" prevailed, beating "The Auld Alliance" into second place by just 28 hundredths of a second. However, both "Once a fortnight" and "The Auld Alliance" paid the price for inconsistency over their three runs and they failed to make the top three in the Constructors Trophy, which was won by The Cheats with "Tequila Slammer" - an improved version of the cartie that was mauled by the corner that carries its name the previous year.
The next gala will be on Saturday, 09th June 2007, so put it in your diaries now.