Quote from MoranicOk, so it seems most of your lag comes from the distance (judging by the traceroute). You can try this traceroute too on your friends machine to see the difference in the routes.
I'm afraid it does look like you'll have to find a server closer to home though.
Righto, Ill get the trace routes and ping tests when I go to his house. He has a mac pro too, so is it ok if I run the tests on my machine?