Two big weekends of Club racing
The countdown to the 2015 Bankstream New Zealand Rowing Championships is on, with the North Island and South Island Club Championships both being contested over the coming weekends at Lake Karapiro, Cambridge and Lake Ruataniwha, Twizel. Both regattas will provide some top quality racing for rowing clubs and crews ahead of the major National Championships.
Lake Ruataniwha will host the South Island regatta this weekend and crews will contest heats on Saturday 31 January and finals on Sunday 1 February. Over the weekend there will be 78 events challenged by 1169 athletes including 1057 rowers and 235 coxswains in 1030 crews representing 39 clubs. The weather outlook is not looking so summery with rain showers expected and temperatures expected to reach a mild 19 or 20 degrees.
For the South Island regatta some of the New Zealand summer squad are making the trip down to Twizel to compete, including women’s lightweights Zoe McBride and Sophie MacKenzie, and a men’s lightweight group including Curtis Rapley, James Lassche, Alistair Bond and James Hunter, while Gen Behrent and Rebecca Scown will represent the women’s sweep oar group.
Next weekend Lake Karapiro will play host to the North Island Club Championship regatta. The event will run from Waitangi Day (Friday 6 February) over three days with finals to be completed on Sunday 8 February. At the close of entries the 56 events will be challenged by 808 athletes in 608 crews from 31 clubs. The long range forecast for the Waikato is mixed with a mixture of showers and fine spells predicted with temperatures reaching the low to mid 20s.
At the North Island regatta the New Zealand Summer Squad will again have some tough racing in the men’s premier single sculls, with Eric Murray, Hamish Bond set to rival fellow Olympic Champion Mahe Drysdale. Drysdale looks to be the favourite after taking a recent win at the Cambridge Town Cup, however there will be fierce competition from the likes of Robbie Manson, who won the event at the Karapiro Christmas Regatta.
Lucy Spoors and Fiona Bourke will again go head to head in the women’s premier single. Bourke took a win at the Karapiro Christmas Regatta, while Lucy Spoors took the latest win at the Cambridge Town Cup regatta.
Combined these North and South Island Club Championship regattas will have 70 clubs, 1977 athletes and 1638 crews competing.
Throughout the rest of the country there will also be rowing racing happening at the Wellington Provincial Championships, Wanganui Championships and Mangakino Junior Age Regatta. This will add an extra 1958 athletes competing in 1714 crews on Saturday 31 January.
The Bankstream New Zealand Rowing Championships will be held at Lake Ruataniwha, Twizel in the South Island from 17-21 February.
For results please see RowIT:
North Island Club Championships: http://www.rowit.co.nz/results/nicc2015
South Island Club Championships http://www.rowit.co.nz/results/sicc2015