Friends’ honour for skier Craig

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FRIENDS of a top skier killed in an alleged drink-driving incident have gathered to honour him with a bike ride to the scene of the accident.

Award-winning sportsman Craig Macfie, from Edinburgh, died from head injuries after he was knocked from his bicycle during an early-morning ride in Eugene, Oregon, last Saturday.

Yesterday, the University of Oregon’s bike programme donated a bike as a tribute to the promising pupil, and friends rode it from the campus to the place of the tragedy, where they locked it up by the roadside.

Craig, 24, who had skied with the Full Alpine Skiing GB team, was in collision with a 4x4 and was rushed to hospital. He died from his injuries shortly afterwards.

His American friends held a vigil by his bedside while his parents and siblings, who live in Corrennie Gardens, travelled to the Pacific North-west of the United States to be with him.

Craig had won a string of skiing titles and was part of the GB team at the university winter games two years ago.

Since moving to Oregon to study, he also skied with the university's Alpine racing team, where friends and teammates described him as an “Olympic level athlete”.

On Sunday night, his brother Alastair, 22, paid tribute to Craig on his Facebook page: “We will miss him dreadfully. He enjoyed a full, interesting and enjoyable life. It was just too short.”

Craig was to graduate next month after going to the west coast of America in 2008 to study sports marketing and business administration.

He was due to graduate next month and had a job in London lined up.

The student was cycling in Eugene at 2.30am when he was allegedly hit by 21-year-old Patrick Compton’s Toyota 4-runner.

Craig was cycling in a bike lane when Compton allegedly hit him from behind.

Eugene police said Compton, who also studied in University of Oregon, was in jail after being charged with second-degree assault and drunk-driving.

Tributes for the skier flooded in on his Facebook page since news of his death was posted on Sunday.

Meanwhile, Jane Harvey, head of Snowsport Scotland, said Craig was a “fantastic talent”.

Neil McQuoid, from the sports’ Racer Ready magazine, said: “Craig achieved eight top ten finishes in international races.

“He twice finished second and only lost out to guys who are now at the very top of the sport. He skied all over the world at the very top.”

The skier’s parents, Rosemary and Andy, both 55, his brothers Alastair and Euan, and sister Catriona, were at his bedside when he died.