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2021 South Island Rowing Championships

31 Jan

Over the weekend Wanaka Rowing Club with their squad of 19 rowers and 3 coaches attended the South Island Rowing Championship Regatta held in Twizel. It was perfect racing conditions over the two days – blue bird skies and flat calm water. This allowed all the rowers to put their training into practice and it was great to see everyone improving their performance since the last regatta. Overall, the club gained some exceptional results and they brought home 6 gold medals and 3 silver medals. From the 22 events that athletes competed in crews made 14 A finals and 2 B finals. Some stand out performances to mention include the Intermediate girls who gained A finals in all their events. Firstly, the under 19 girls quad made up of Pipi Horan, Emily Findlay, Lyla Chamberlain, Neve Faed and coxswain Thomas Mitchell came second up against some tough competition who were a lot older than them. Soon after in the under 16 girls double, Pipi Horan and Ruby Boyd placed second. The Intermediate coxed quad with Neve Faed, Lyla Chamberlain, Bella Sarginson and Samara Goodall with coxswain Thomas Mitchell raced well with a comfortable first place win! A gutsy performance with an impressive follow up result occurred in the girls under 17 quad with Neve Faed, Emily Findlay, Bella Sarginson, Samara Goodall and coxswain Thomas Mitchell to take home another gold medal! Competition was hot in the girls intermediate double sculls with Lyla Chamberlain and Samara Goodall coming 5th in the A final against crew members Bella Sarginson and Ruby Boyd who placed 6th right on their tail with only milliseconds difference in race times. Aaron Maxwell a recent transfer into the club performed exceptionally well winning the mens intermediate single sculls with a comfortable 3 boat led. Aaron also joined Tao Hawkey-Hight in the mens intermediate double A final where they placed 7th. The novice girls crew of Ella Kaler, Amelia Craig, Kelly Quirke, Jess Gould and coxswain Thomas Mitchell also came out with a bang taking 3rd in their heats and coming a notable 9th in an A final which is excellent result considering they are all very new to competing. The clubs coaches have also recently returned to the water and proved to their rowers ‘they’ve still got it’ gaining a medal placing in all events. Rachel O’Connell had a confident win in her woman’s masters single, Rachel then joined Matt Rickard to win the mixed masters double with a cruise over the finish line first. They both then joined with Dave Ayers to create a composite masters quad with Matt Adams (Columba College Coach) to take home a silver medal! The Novice boys of Jem Curtis, Torben Craig, Anton Jones, Matai Wells, Max Good showed some strong racing over the weekend. Anton Jones also joined with a Timaru crew to fill a seat in their boys under 15 octuple sculls gaining an excellent 2nd place in the A final. As a small club we have performed remarkably well and it is gratitude due to many hours of hard work from both the athletes and coaches. Well done to all! We couldn’t perform like this without our wonderful sponsors either. Thank you to our sponsors and if you are interested in backing Wanaka Rowing Club please don’t hesitate to make contact with us.From left back row – Aaron Maxwell, Jess Gould, Kelly Quirke, Amelia Craig, Ella Kaler, Max Good, Jem Curtis, Torben Craig, Tao Hawkey-Hight From left front row – Rachel O’Connell (coach), Dave Ayres (coach), Pipi Horan, Emily Findlay, Neve Faed, Lyla Chamberlain, Thomas Mitchell (cox), Samara Goodall, Bella Sarginson, Ruby Boyd, Matai Wells, Anton Jones, Matt Rickard (coach). Report and Photo by Angela Rickard – Club Liaison

2021 Canterbury Championships Report Wanaka Rowing Club

17 Jan

The Wanaka Rowing Club attended the Canterbury Championships Regatta on January 16th and 17th at Lake Ruataniwha. We took a contingent of 19 athletes competing in 28 events with entry into 14 A finals and 2 B finals. The heats were held on Saturday in very hot, calm conditions perfect for racing. Sunday dawned raining and cold with a breeze that eventually caused the abandonment of the regatta with only a fraction of the finals being completed. There were some notable results from the A Finals that were completed however. The under 16 girls double combination of Pipi Horan and Ruby Boyd converted their win in the heat to an emphatic win in the A final. The woman’s under 19 quad of Pipi Horan, Emily Findlay, Bella Sarginson, Neve Faed and Thomas Mitchell as coxswain came second behind a very experienced Dunstan combination. The new woman’s intermediate coxed quad combination of Neve Faed, Samara Goodall, Lyla Chamberlain, Hayley Ambrose and Thomas Mitchell as cox won their heat and went on to place third in the A final. The two doubles combinations of Bella Sarginson and Ruby Boyd along with Hayley Ambrose and Samara Goodall were both in the woman’s intermediate doubles sculls event where they placed 1st and 3rd respectively but were unable to race their A final.The men’s novice double crew of Jem Curtis and Torben Craig showed a lot of potential placing third in their heat to qualify for the A final where they placed 5th. The woman’s novice quad crew of Kelly Quirke, Ella Kaler, Amelia Craig, Jess Gould and Thomas Mitchell as coxswain were unlucky they did not get to race their A final as they showed a lot of potential placing third in their heat. Aaron Maxwell who has recently joined the club transferring from Oamaru was also unlucky not to convert his second placing in the heat of the men’s intermediate single sculls and his second placing in the heat of the men’s intermediate double sculls event where he teamed up with Tao Hawkey-Hight. Both A finals were cancelled due to wind.The athletes were supported by their coaches Rachel O’Connell, Matt Rickard and David Ayres who were joined by AJ Humphreys to compete in the Masters quad sculls event which they won. Rachel also convincingly won her woman’s masters single sculls event.Apart from being blown off on the Sunday the regatta was a great success and showed that the crews are on track to perform well at the upcoming South Island Championships on the 30th and 31st of January.

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Race Report composed by AJ Humphreys – Club Captain

Photos Courtesy: Jo Jones

2020 Wanaka Rowers Win Four Golds

24 Mar

Wanaka Rowing Club,Mount Aspiring College rowers outclassed many of their secondary school rivals at the Meridian South Island Secondary Schools championships at Lake Ruataniwha, near Twizel, last weekend.

The squad of 17 teenage rowers won four gold medals and one silver medal in the A Finals and achieved three podium finishes in the B Finals.

The squad of girls, Pipi Horan, Ruby Boyd, Aneka Rossiter and novice rower Eva Humphreys (U15), Emily Findlay, Neve Faed, Lyla Chamberlain, Samara Goodall, Hayley Ambrose, Ella Salmen Parker and Bella Sarginson (U16), Rata Horan and Harriet Norris (U18) and coxens Patrick Hartley and Jem Curtis, coached by David Ayres and Matt Rickard, took top honours over the weekend in an impressive demonstration of rowing in the U15, U16 and U17 events.

The rowers, all members of the Wanaka Rowing Club (WRC), joined almost 1,000 other rowers from 49 schools scattered all over the South Island to compete in the three day annual schools’ regatta from Friday March 13-15. A similar regatta was also held in the North Island last weekend.

WRC coach David Ayers said the squad had been training hard and deserved their success. “I thought we had a shot at winning maybe two events but winning five medals was just fantastic,” he said.

Having efficiently won their heats, the new combination of Emily Findlay, Neve Faed, Lyla Chamberlain and Samara Goodall, coxed by Patrick Hartley, won the U16 quad sculls gold by a comfortable 10 second margin and, with Pipi Horan replacing Samara, the crew then went on to win the U17 coxed quad sculls by five seconds.

Gold medal winners Ruby Boyd and Pipi Horan flanked by their coaches (left) Matt Rickard and (right) David Ayres.

Pipi Horan celebrated a hugely successful regatta, adding to her gold medal tally by winning the U15 and Under 16 girls double sculls with Ruby Boyd in the former and Emily Findlay in the latter. Both pairs had blitzed the competition in the heats by 30 seconds but the finals were a different story with more fiercely contested races and Pipi and Ruby snatched victory in the U15 event by only a quarter of a second from arch rivals Wakatipu High School.

Wakatipu High School did gain the upper hand in the girls’ U15 coxed quad sculls however, as Pipi and Ruby, together with Eva Humphreys and Aneka Rossiter (coxed once again by Patrick) had to settle for the silver medal, five seconds behind Wakatipu.

The B crew of Hayley Ambrose, Bella Sarginson, Ella Salmen Parker and Aneka Rossiter, coxed by Jem Curtis, was second in the B Final of the U16 girls coxed quads.

Meanwhile, in the U18 competition, Rata Horan finished a respectable sixth in the A final of the single sculls; Harriet Norris rowed well into second place in the B Final singles; and the coxed quad of Neve Faed, Harriet Norris, Lyla Chamberlain and Rata Horan, coxed by Patrick Hartley, rowed into fifth in the A Final.

The successful regatta wasn’t just celebrated by the girls alone. Quinn Curtis and Owen Lea, coached by Rob Bruce, both made the B Finals of the U18 singles, with Owen coming first and Quinn in sixth place, and in U18 doubles Quinn and Owen rowed fifth in the B Final.

And while Tao Hawkey Hight, who made the B final in the U16 singles, didn’t reach a podium place, he pulled off an impressive feat nonetheless when he flipped his boat, managed to right it, clamber back in, and still cross the finish line.

Coaches David Ayres and Matt Rickard were concerned that the girls were lacking water time as it’s been so windy in Wanaka this season. The short, sharp erg sessions at Wanaka’s new watersports facility have paid off instead with the crews being supremely fit and rowing technically very well.

In added good news Pipi Horan and Emily Findlay have been invited to attend the NZ U18 trials this month in the North Island. New Zealand selectors attended last weekend’s regatta and selected the pair after witnessing Pipi and Emily’s commanding performance in the U16 doubles, where they won by at least four lengths of clear water.

The squad has been building towards the prestigious Maadi Cup Regatta due to start on March 28 but learned yesterday (March 16) it’s likely to be cancelled. “It’s a shame with the squad going so well but that is the situation we’re in,” David said.

PHOTOS: Rowing Celebration

Write up from: Diana Cocks, Wanaka App

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