Flying Scotsman is blazing a trail for Kirkintilloch

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A KIRKINTILLOCH Olympian has helped Great Britain to shine at a top cross country event in Slovenia.

Matthew Graham placed 45th in the SPAR European Cross Country Championships in Velenje and won a team silver medal with Great Britain.

Robert Rogerson from the Olympians congratulated Matthew – one of the club’s “great success stories”.

He added: “We were delighted to have him around at training over the last few weeks as he got himself prepared for the event.

“This was his first time in the competition and we were delighted with his performance and that of the team – once again showing the dominance of the British teams in cross country racing.”

Matthew (20) is about to graduate from DePaul University in the USA, where he is studying political science.

He has been a huge success there, helping to win the university prizes and being one of their top athletes.

In cross country, he became the first DePaul student to win all five regular season races in 2009 and followed this up in the 2010-11 season with four wins and three further top three placings . . . as well as setting a personal best time of 30.30.17 for a 10k and earning a spot in the Midwest regional team.

He has also performed well indoors and outdoors with four wins and set times of 14.34 at 5k indoors and 14.38 outdoors.

The Torrance runner is on a full athletic scholarship at Chicago’s De Paul University and has been running since he was 12-years-old.