1 SCOTS in French Alps

1SCOTS Nordic Ski and Biathlon Team

1SCOTS Nordic Ski and Biathlon Team

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An eight-man team from the Royal Scots Borderers have been in the French Alps training for an army skiing competition next year.

The soldiers – whose battalion is part of The Royal Regiment of Scotland – were conducting Nordic skiing and biathlon training in preparation for the Army Divisional Championships.

Jack McCaldin of the Royal Scots Borderers hone their shooting and skiing skills.

Jack McCaldin of the Royal Scots Borderers hone their shooting and skiing skills.

Nordic skiing is physically demanding and sees competitors race on flat cross-country routes on narrow skis, with biathlon events combining this skill with rifle shooting. The Royal Scots Borderers were training three times a day – two skiing sessions and a rifle practice on the shooting range.

Their four-week camp was conducted alongside other infantry units and the team will return to France for more intense training prior to the championships after some Christmas leave.

Private Jack McCaldin, 19, from Haddington, who is part of the squad, said: “It is amazing to get the opportunity to do something like this. It’s great to wake up in the morning and see the snow and blue skies and head out to do some training.

“I was pretty unsteady on the skis at first, but I am really getting the hang of it now – as are all the boys. My shooting has improved too from the training on the biathlon rifle.”

Jack McCaldin of the Royal Scots Borderers hone their shooting and skiing skills.

Jack McCaldin of the Royal Scots Borderers hone their shooting and skiing skills.