A North-east swimming star was one of two athletes to take the honour of carrying the Queen’s Baton as it made its final appearance at the Edinburgh Royal Military Tattoo.
Team Scotland medalists Lynsey Sharp and Hannah Miley, from Inverurie, carried the Baton down the Castle Esplanade, flanked by the Royal Navy Guard of Honour, taking the Royal salute prior to the start of the show yesterday.
Edinburgh’s track and field star Lynsey Sharp, who won Commonwealth Games silver in the 800m at Glasgow 2014 and has just returned from the 2017 World Championships, started proceedings, before passing the Baton to Hannah.
Lynsey said: “It is a massive honour to carry the Baton and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. I miss Edinburgh a lot. I grew up here going to the Tattoo and my school performed here so it is really special.
“Now that Worlds are out the way, Commonwealths are the next big focus. I have great memories from Glasgow and I am really looking forward to it being a different experience being so far from home. The Scottish athletics team has come on a long way since Glasgow so that is really exciting as well and on a personal level I would love to go one better than Glasgow.
“We don’t get the opportunity to compete for Scotland very often so it makes being part of Team Scotland even more special and I love being part of that smaller even tighter knit team.”
Double Commonwealth Games gold medallist in Swimming, Hannah Miley who hopes to compete in her fourth Games in Gold Coast and would love to defend her 400m Individual Medley title for a second time said: “I feel very proud and it is such a wonderful honour and I feel very lucky to have been chosen. I watched the Baton Relay for 2006, 2010 and for Glasgow in 2014 and for the athletes it signifies the start of the build-up for the Games. This is the first time I have taken part in the Baton Relay which makes it quite special and to be the last Batonbearer is really cool!
“It means the World to me to represent Team Scotland. When athletes compete you are not only doing it for yourself, but for your team and for your nation. There is something homely about it and it resonates in your heart a bit more when you put on the Scottish kit and you hear the Scottish anthem.
“The Scottish people have been so supportive to me over the years that I would love to be able to give back and do well in Gold Coast. I have a very intensive seven months of training ahead of me, but I aim to go there and just race for my team and hopefully put on a great performance that is special to watch like in Glasgow.”
Earlier in the day the Baton had made visits to two major sports events where Scottish athletes are striving to be selected for Team Scotland for the 2018 Games.
The QBR joined athletes past and present for a celebration lap of the Grangemouth Stadium track, at the Scottish Senior Athletics Championships which is a selection event for Gold Coast 2018.
Paul Bush OBE, Chair of Commonwealth Games Scotland said: “It is great to see the Queen’s Baton Relay making such an impact up and down the country, with so many people getting the opportunity to touch the Gold Coast 2018 Baton on its global journey. The reception for our Team Scotland athletes, not to mention our mascot Clyde, has been quite overwhelming and hopefully this wave of support will continue to build, up to next year’s Commonwealth Games.
“It was really special to have the Baton here at Edinburgh Castle tonight prior to the Tattoo, one of the most iconic Scottish events acclaimed across the world and I believe it was a fitting finale to the 41st stop on the Baton’s global journey.”