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Ross County Athletics Club athlete wins national cross country event in Perthshire 10 weeks after breaking ankle

By Will Clark

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ROSS County Athletics Club athlete Andrew Baird produced a sensational victory at the Scottish Athletics Short Course Cross Country race, 10 weeks after breaking his ankle.

Andrew Baird
Andrew Baird

The Fortrose Academy pupil proved too good for the chasing pack, as he won the under-13 1.5km title in five minutes and 10 seconds.

He was two seconds clear of Falkirk Victoria Harrier athlete Luke Culliton, and five seconds ahead of Harmeny runner Fergus Ross in third.

A football injury at school earlier this year threatened the 12-year-old’s participation in race events during 2020.

But since returning to running three weeks before his win at Scone Palace, Baird feels he is near back to his best.

“I was happy with my time, but I felt that I could have gone faster if I wasn’t recovering from a broken ankle from 10 weeks before,” he said.

“I have only been training for three weeks and
went down with no expectations.

“But it hasn’t been that hard since coming back from injury, as I have been training on a Monday, Wednesday and a Saturday.

“However, to go and win the race was very unexpected, and the coaches have been great and helped me a lot.”

Baird says his victory in Perthshire was the biggest achievement of what has been an impressive athletics career so far.

He came third at the national 1500-metre championships in Grangemouth in 2019, and came third in the indoor championships in Glasgow in February.

He also won at the North League Cross Country Series in March.

Baird, who has ran cross- country competitively for two years, says he is now focused on continuing his progress in 2021.

He said: “I am now preparing to take part in the Inter-district event at Inverness in January.”

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