Greg Hadley Wins His 5th Canadian Highland Games Championships

The 2009 Canadian Highland Games Championships ended with Greg Hadley earning his fifth Canadian title.

2009 Canadian Heavy Events Championships
by Francis Brebner with Greg Hadley reporting

The 2009 Canadian Scottish Athletic Federation National Championships were held this past weekend in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada.  Despite rain all weekend, Canada’s top 10 athletes, as determined by a sanctioned ranking system, assembled for a great competition.  The championships was a one-day contest of the seven traditional Scottish events.
Things got underway with the 17.3-lb. open stone.  Greg Hadley’s second round throw of 49’ 8” was enough to snag him first place.  Second was top Canadian track and field athlete Matt Doherty, with a put of 47’ 3”.  Third was taken by Saskatchewan native Jason Johnston at 43’ 7”.
Competitors then moved on to the 56-lb. weight for distance.  Hadley again claimed top honors with toss of 41’ 10”.  Right on his heels was Johnston at 41’ 4”.  Lyle Barron of Country Harbour, Nova Scotia, took third with 37’ 7”.  After the 56, the rain began to pick up speed, hampering the crowds.
The third event of the day was the 22-lb. Scottish hammer.  This time Lyle Barron took the field with a monster throw of 111’ 3” for a personal best and a new Canadian championships record.  Greg Hadley was second at 108’ 9”, with Johnston in third at 102’ 3”.
In an attempt to seize a break in the rain, the athletes moved on to the 28-lb. weight for distance.  Jason Johnston took first place with a throw of 76’ 6”.  Hadley and Matt Doherty rounded out the field with throws of 75’ 6” and 75’ 2”, respectively.
The 16-lb. hammer was next in line.  In a thrilling competition that saw many lead changes, Greg Hadley’s toss of 135’ 8” was enough for the win.  In second place was Lyle Barron at 133’ 2”, which was another personal best.
The competition caber followed.  Fashioned by Dirk Bishop and standing 21’ and officially weighing in at 122 lb., the caber defied all but three competitors.  Lyle Barron’s 11:45 was enough to beat Jamie Peppard’s 12:15 on countback.  Hadley came in third at 12:30.
The final event of the day was the 56-lb. weight for height.  Jason Johnston took top honors with a fine throw of 16’.  Danny Frame, of Nova Scotia, was second, also at 16’.  Christoph Wand and Greg Hadley shared third place at 15’.
After the dust settled, Greg Hadley claimed his fifth consecutive Canadian title, putting him second in wins behind 9-time champion Harry MacDonald.  Greg’s fifth title moved him one ahead of fellow Antigonish native Doug MacDonald.
Hadley was thrilled to win his fifth title and was quick to single out Lyle Barron as a thrower to watch in the next few years:  “Lyle is one of the world’s best caber tossers and one to keep a close eye on.”
Hadley also added, “Overall it was a fantastic day of throwing despite the weather.  The Moncton people did a great job organizing the event despite this being only their third year hosting a Games.  I’m feeling good now leading up to the 2009 IHGF World Team Championships in my hometown of Antigonish, Nova Scotia.”
Final placings:
1.  Greg Hadley
2.  Jason Johnston
3.  Lyle Barron
4.  Matt Doherty
5.  Dirk Bishop
6.  Christoph Wand
7.  Jamie Peppard
8.  Danny Frame
9.  Markus Wand
10.  Sean Langford

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