Local runner Steve Lisgo has been selected to represent Scotland and compete in the 3k steeplechase event at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games next month where he will compete against the current world record holder, the current Olympic champion and the current world champion.
The Scottish selectors set athletes a very tough qualifying standard based on the eighth place at the previous Games in Delhi in 2010.
In attempting to achieve the necessary qualifying time of 8 minutes 40 seconds Steve travelled to America and Europe to seek quality competition competing in international races in California and Belgium where he won both his races in times of 8-39 and 8-38, beating athletes from several other nations.
The former Garibaldi schoolboy from Forest Town now works as a teacher in Leeds where Olympic and World Triathlon champions Alistair Brownlee and Non Stanford are among his training partners. When his race schedule allows, Steve competes for Mansfield Harriers in the British Athletics League.
As a developing athlete Steve was coached at Mansfield Harriers by endurance coach Richard Massey and hurdles coach Ted Grey, both of whom have produced several international standard athletes.
Steve has benefited from support given by the Armchair Club in Mansfield and the ASDA Talented Athlete Scheme. Mansfield District Council has also supported Steve through free use of facilities at leisure centres for training.
Steve qualifies to represent Scotland through his late mother Heather, who was born in Edinburgh but sadly died very suddenly when he was only a teenager.
It will therefore be a very special and poignant moment when Steve proudly pulls on the Scottish vest and toes the start line in front of 40,000 spectators at Hamden Park on 1st August.