Four of the world’s strongest men were today set to take on a team of locals as part of a new TV show.
Eddie Hall, Brian Shaw, Robert Oberst and Nick Best, who have all held the title of the strongest man in the world, are in the north-east filming a new programme for the History Channel.
The quartet are following in the footsteps of the renowned 19th Century strongman Donald Dinnie, who won 21 consecutive Highland Games championships, by taking part in a variety of traditional challenges.
They have already lifted the famous Dinnie Steens – two boulders with a combined weight of 733 pounds – which Dinnie himself first lifted across Potarch Bridge in 1860. Only 90 men and two women have ever lifted them.
The group were today due to take on a team of eight local competitors in a tug o’ war at the Braemar Highland Games Centre.
Jim Wood, secretary of the Braemar Royal Highland Society, said: “It’s fantastic that the guys are here following in the footsteps of Donald Dinnie.
“They are taking part in some of the tests of strength and events that he would have done back in the 1800s.
“They have tried their hand at lifting the Dinnie Steens – one of them managed to lift them 11 feet which is very impressive.”
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As well as testing their strength, the strongmen have also been immersing themselves in the local culture – and Mr Wood hopes the TV show will be a great advert for the north-east.
He said: “The weather since the guys have been here has been fantastic and it’s proving to be a brilliant opportunity to showcase the area to the rest of the world.
“They have all been really impressed with everything they’ve seen.
“The history we have here is just amazing and it’s great that the guys are here to give us the chance to show it to so many people.
“The guys have all been fitted for kilts and had a go at trying the chanter. They have been really keen to engage with the culture and history.
“Before they go back down south they are going to be hosted at Braemar Castle for a Burns Supper.
“As well as the food, there will be a taste of the culture as well which they are really enjoying.
“The programme has been a really good way of showcasing the Highland way of life.”