The new Scottish record for indoor pole vaulting has been set by a Montrose athlete.
Gregor MacLean took the new Scottish indoor record with his personal best of 5.40 metres while competing in Orleans, France.
The 22-year-old has jumped the record height almost a year after breaking his leg, which hampered his chances of jumping in the 2013 outdoor season.
He said: “Setting the new record is a great achievement for me, especially coming back from the leg injury I got last year. I am very happy with how I started this season, as I was unsure what it would be like coming back off of a long approach, but I do hope to keep my heights high and increase the record even more.”
After his injury, Gregor salvaged half a season after a tough five month recovery process, consisting of stability and strength rehabilitation.
He said: “Once I got back jumping, it only took around one month of training to get back to a long enough of a run-up that I could compete. I had my first competition back in early June, which was off of 10 steps and jumped a height of 4.80 metres, which at the time was a personal best from that run-up. It only took another six to seven weeks for me to get back jumping heights that were close to my personal best off of 18 steps.
“I eventually got my run-up back to 14 steps, which ended up being the longest approach I used all last year,”
Within his first two competition off of 14 steps, Gregor had jumped a Commonwealth Games qualifying height of 5.20 metres in Cork, Ireland, and by July 23 he had jumped five Commonwealth Games qualifying heights and had almost equalled his personal best at the time of 5.35 metres and jumped 5.30 metres.
Gregor took a break and, after a change of coach, started the winter season in September. He said: “When I started back training, I had lost a lot of speed endurance, due to not being able to run for four months throughout the previous season due to my leg, so my main aim was to get fit and strong quick. Two months into winter training, I was back to full fitness and stronger than I had ever been. After the strength period, I focused on getting my run-up back to 18 steps, so that I would be able to jump higher than the previous season.”
He opened the season with an open meet in Manchester on the January 4 with a height of 5.17 metres - his my highest opening height in his first competition. He has gone on to jump two consecutive Commonwealth Games standards of 5.24 metres in Clermont-Ferrand, France and the new Scottish indoor record.
Gregor concluded: “Overall, coming back from a severe leg injury less than a year ago, I have managed to pull everything back and be in the best shape of my career. I am hoping to carry on with my good form and will be aiming to jump another Scottish indoor record at the Scottish Indoor Championships in Glasgow on February 2.”
Gregor hopes to compete in the Glasgow Commonwealth Games and is waiting on the team selection.