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McFarlane appeals for Highland pole vault practice space to keep Commonwealth Games dream alive


By Alasdair Fraser


A talented pole vaulter is appealing for help in keeping his Commonwealth Games dream alive amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Edinburgh University mechanical engineering student Andrew McFarlane is back at his parents’ home in the Highlands because of the outbreak, leaving him with no suitable training venue for hundreds of miles.

Andrew McFarlane earned gold medal success at the National Indoor Age Group Championships last year. Picture: Bobby Gavin
Andrew McFarlane earned gold medal success at the National Indoor Age Group Championships last year. Picture: Bobby Gavin

The former Ross County Athletics Club member, from Inverness, fears a prolonged exile from his Grangemouth training base could hit his hopes of staying on track for Birmingham 2022.

McFarlane (19) can now only train sporadically in his back garden, far from ideal conditions. He hopes a sympathetic local landlord might be able to offer an empty industrial unit, hall, barn or other large building.

In his highly technical sport, indoor practise is where rhythm, timing and confidence thrive, away from erratic outdoor conditions.

The former Charleston Academy pupil, who moved south to study last September, showed immense promise as a schoolboy competitor.

Read more in today's North Star or Highland News.



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