In the Highland Games, or traditional Scottish heavy athletics, competitors participate in six to nine events in which they throw various heavy objects, which are scored either by distance or by height. All competitors must wear kilts in order to maintain traditional customs.
One of Jennings County High School’s science teachers, Victoria Lee, is currently ranked seventh in North America based on her skill in the games and is likely to be invited to compete nationally during the summer of 2017.
Lee said that she first got interested in Scottish heavy athletics when she moved to Columbus and began exercising at the Tipton Lakes Athletic Club, where she met Zach Riley, one of the club trainers. Both had competed in track and field in college in the hammer throw. When Riley asked Lee if she would be interested in entering a local Highland Games competition in 2015, she accepted, thinking it would be a fun thing to do. Lee ended up the victor.
A year after, in the summer of 2016, Victoria traveled to another competition in Kentucky with Riley, where they met a professional Highland Games athlete. He saw potential in her throwing abilities and called Lee and Riley back to Kentucky for a training session, for which he had acquired all of the equipment Lee would need as a female Highland Games competitor.
This sparked confidence within Lee, who said she now trains specifically for the Highland Games using methods such as power or Olympic lifting and yoga.
Lee has competed in six competitions in the past year and has earned numerous prizes including plaques, a dagger, a short and claymore sword, a hand-painted tambourine and many complimentary T-shirts.
Hopefully she can earn even more in the future and enjoy success and satisfaction that results from her constant hard work and dedication.