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Javelin whiz to star in baton relay

Year 11 student from Proserpine State High School, Howard McDonald will carry the Queen's Baton during an international relay in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games in March next year.
Year 11 student from Proserpine State High School, Howard McDonald will carry the Queen's Baton during an international relay in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games in March next year. Peter Carruthers

PROSERPINE baton bearers are gearing up for the Queensland leg of an international baton relay which will embark on a 100-day long journey through the sunshine state beginning at Horn Island on March 3.

One of the 3800 Australians to carry the Queen's Baton in the lead up to the Commonwealth Games at the Gold Coast is young javelin athlete Howard McDonald whose grandfather was also a baton bearer at the Commonwealth Games.

Other community champions from Proserpine to carry the baton will be Esther Gabey and twin gold medal winning Paralympic cyclist David Nicholls.

For one month during the school summer holidays, the Queen's Baton will visit major events, iconic landmarks and children's hospitals across the country.

The traditional relay will resume in Canberra on January 25, 2018 and will be carried by great Australians through QBR celebration communities around the country.

The baton arrives back in Queensland on March 3 on Horn Island, for a month long journey around Queensland before the start of the Commonwealth Games on April 4.

The baton's activity during the school holidays and the street-level detail through Celebration Communities will be revealed on November 17.

Howard said he was thrilled to have a chance to represent his school and the Whitsunday community when the baton came to the region on March 19.

"It's pretty special and probably a once in a lifetime opportunity,” he said.

Howard was nominated as a baton bearer by head of the Physical Education Department at the school, Andrew Cox.

Since its launch from Buckingham Palace on March 13 this year, the baton has inspired athletes and fans across Africa, the Caribbean, the Americas and Europe.

Currently it is in Malaysia and will visit 15 Commonwealth nations before arriving in Australia on Christmas Eve.

Proserpine State High School industry liaison officer Nicole Jolley said it was a great thing for a rising young athletic star to be represented in the Commonwealth Games Queen's Baton Relay.

Topics:  baton bearers commonwealth games 2018 proserpine state high school whitsundays

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