Otago rowers impress
from Appalling weather at the NZ Masters Rowing Championships at Karapiro did not stop a hardy bunch of Otago rowers from claiming a large swag of medals.
Wanaka’s Amanda Inkster and Cromwell’s Natalie Wilson were among the five Otago women who toughed out the squally conditions to win four golds, four silvers and three bronze medals.
They also claimed the Tri Series women titles in the eight and coxless quad.
The experience was invaluable for Inkster, who competes next week with members of the Port Chalmers club at the World Masters Rowing Championships in Melbourne.
The worlds only come to the Southern Hemisphere every eight years.
Inkster said racing was continually delayed on the Saturday due to high cross winds and rain.
Several crews capsized in the morning and racing was finally restarted over a shortened 500m course.
‘‘Thankfully there were beautiful conditions on Sunday with all racing going to schedule over the full 1000m course.
‘‘One of the closest races of the weekend was the final of the women’s C double sculls with the winning crew just under a length ahead of the next four crews, fighting for second place. It was a very close call,’’ Inkster said. The result was decided by video camera with Inkster and Port Chalmers rower Michelle Johnson just pipped for silver by a Mercer crew and having to be content with bronze.
Inkster, Wilson and Johnson were in the South Island ladies’ eight that won the Tri Series title, an annual race between South Island, North Island and Australian teams.
Two Port Chalmers rowers, Robyn Cameron and Imogen Coxhead, were in the winning Tri Series ladies coxless quad.
Inkster said the Australians did not compete this year as they are concentrating on the upcoming worlds event.
Masters medallists: left Otago rowers Robyn Cameron, Michelle Johnson (both Port Chalmers), Amanda Inkster (Wanaka), Imogen Coxhead (Port Chalmers), and Natalie Wilson (Cromwell) at Karapiro.