The early part of the 20th centuary

 In former years the cycling events have been held on the road but this year they were held around the ring and although the track was somewhat rough some good riding was witnessed.

The quoiting handicap of 18yds 18 shots up had a very large entry and was completed after four rounds, a semi and a final. I st J. Knox, Hartriggs, 25 shillings and a set of carvers presented by Mr T. Young, 2nd J. Aitchison, Floors, 15 shillings. The arrangements were carried through by Mr T. Young, secretary and a committee of J. Minto, Tofts; Lillie, Kelso; W. Ballantyne, Kersknowe; W. Ovens, Morebattle; J. Fox, Morebattle; P. Galbraith, ‘Marlefield; R. Lauder, Whitton; W. Lillie, Clifton Cote; W. Hall, Hownam and W. Bums, Caverton Hill. The judges were Mr J. Robertson, Morebattle Tofts and Mr T. Cox, Lochside. Mr Alex Lillie made an efficient starter.

   Cycle-Race-for-Web                                                 Morebattle Games Cycle-race

The first post war celebration of these popular games was held Saturday past in a field kindly granted by Mr J. Roberton, Morebattle Tofts. Favored with beautiful weather and a very large attendance of spectators the meeting was a distinct success and it must have been very gratifying to the secretary, Mr. T. Young and his committee to see so many present.

Everything went off satisfactorily. In that year, 1920, the following were the official judges-Mr Roberton, Morebattle Tofts; Mr Pearson, Otterbum; Dr Rodger, Yetholm; Dr Lauder, Morebattle; Starter Mr J. E. Fox; Handicappers Mr W. Lothian and Mr J. Fox; Committee Messrs W Lillie, J. Y. Burns, W. Lothian, J. Fox, J. Wight, W. Wilson, J. Liddle, G. Scott, A. Minto, W. Whitelaw, C. Cranston and J. Crawford.

The woman’s Guild party of Morebattle Parish Church had a marquee on the ground where tea, lemonade, etc. were served. This was convened by Mrs Whitelaw and Mrs Dawson.

Morebattle Games were recognised as one of the leading games meetings in the dis­trict. In 1922, the programme comprised of 28 events and the absence of bookies made it a capital afternoon’s sport as all competitors were ‘triers’. Kelso ‘peds’ carried off chief hon­ours, the principle events being won by J. Purves while both the handicap and scratch races of 440yds. fell to J. Hume (Kelso rugby captain). Locally chief interest centred on the five mile marathon race for the handsome challenge cup and gold medal presented by A. Thomson of Cowbog. Ten runners were forward at the start. The course was by way of Linton, Bumfoot and Grubbit Bridge finishing opposite the sports field. This circular route being thrice run to complete the distance. The winner of the challenge cup, gold medal and four pounds was J. Moffat, Morebattle. Later this confined race was changed to two miles on the track.

“In the late twenties many sports meetings have been showing a decline in support, both from the public and competitors, this cannot be said of Morebattle Games. It was once again demonstrated that with local support the Games attracts competitors from far and near.

“Quoiting at Morebattle has always had a large entry and the wrestling this year was very popular”.

An innovation one year was a motor cycle obstacle race but although the event gener­ated a good deal of interest it occupied too much time to be continued.

Each year the confined race of two miles for the A. Thomson Challenge Cup was competed for as the final event.

The rule was that any runner who won the race three times became the owner of the cup. Great interest was shown in the race and J. Younger, Caverton, having won twice and being a well known trier was strongly fancied. However it was to be another three years before he eventually won it outright.

In the intervening years the race was won by-J. Davidson, Braehouse, 1933; R. Small, Venchen, 1934; T. Young, Morebattle, 1935. J. Younger achieved his ambition in 1936 when he beat T. Young in a very hard fought race.

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