A year of our sport­ing suc­cesses

The Che Baker has put to­gether a list of our sport­ing high­lights for 2014.

Central Otago Mirror - - FRONT PAGE -

A- AFL: Queen­stown be­came the train­ing back­drop for Aus­tralian Foot­ball League’s St Kilda Saints team in de­cem­ber with the club mak­ing the most of the gru­elling train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties the re­sort’s moun­tains and wa­ter­ways of­fer. - Box­ing na­tion­als: The New Zealand Na­tional Box­ing Cham­pi­onships made its Queen­stown de­but Queen­stown in Oc­to­ber. Box­ing legend David Tua watched on as the coun­try’s top box­ers bat­tled in the ring. Queen­stown box­ers Richie Had­low and Callum Owen both won na­tional ti­tles at the cham­pi­onships.

BC- Corey Peters did New Zealand proud win­ning a sil­ver medal at Par­a­lympics in the gi­ant slalom. Peters was awarded the Snow Sports New Zealand’s supreme ath­lete’s award for 2014.

D- Dana Jo­hannsen: New Zealand Her­ald chief sports re­porter Dana Jo­hannsen caused an up­roar in the ski­ing world after diss­ing the New Zealand Win­ter Olympics team in a news­pa­per col­umn. Jo­hannsen said watch­ing the team com­pete was more like watch­ing a ‘‘bunch of Ki­wis on an ex­pen­sive ski­ing hol­i­day’’. She did not make many friends from Queen­stown or Wanaka with the re­marks.

- Erin Greene: Queen­stown en­durance moun­tain biker Erin Greene made her mark on the in­ter­na­tional stage this year, plac­ing third in the Elite World 24 Hour Cham­pi­onships held in Scot­land in Oc­to­ber.

- Fynn Thomp­son: Queen­stown triath­lete Fynn Thomp­son was se­lected to race at the World Cham­pi­onships in Ed­mon­ton, Canada for New Zealand’s elite un­der-19 squad after a year of strong re­sults. He spent part of of May in Cam­bridge train­ing with

EFthe Tri NZ Na­tional Tal­ent Squad.

- Com­mon­wealth Games: Queen­stown Lakes and Cen­tral Otago ath­letes were well rep­re­sented at the Com­mon­wealth Games this year. Cromwell cy­clist Tom Scully won a gold medal in the 40km points race. Wanaka-based triath­letes Tony Dodds and Nicky Sa­muels both came tenth in the in­di­vid­ual triathlons, Cross coun­try moun­tain­biker Kate Fluker, of Queen­stown, fin­ished in eighth and Queen­stown sharp­shooter Jenna MacKen­zie fin­ished with a best re­sult of sev­enth.

GH- Hamish McLean: It was a great year for Wanaka par­a­lympic swimming su­per­star Hamish McLean, 14. McLean smashed sev­eral records in the pool and was be­ing prepped to be­come an in­ter­na­tional ath­lete.

I- Ice Hockey: Ice Blacks and South­ern Stam­pede cap­tain Bert Haines was hon­oured this year after cel­e­brat­ing his tenth year of play­ing ice hockey for the Stam­pede. How­ever, Haines donned the black and white colours when the Ice Blacks took on the home team in Queen­stown in Oc­to­ber.

- Jan­ina Kuzma: After fin­ish­ing in a solid fifth place at the Win­ter Olympics, New Zealand freeskier Jan­ina Kuzma, of Wanaka, could not have asked for a bet­ter start to her north­ern hemi­sphere sea­son with a win in half­pipe at the Cop­per Moun­tain Grand Prix in Colorado, USA in Novem­ber.

- Knights win: The South­ern Knights ice hockey team, con­sist­ing of Queen­stown, Alexan­dra and Dunedin play­ers, won 2-1 the un­der-14 Aus­tralasian ti­tle in Ade­laide in Novem­ber. It was a

JKfeat that no other New Zealand team at pee­wee or mid­get level has man­aged.

- Liam Aitch­e­son: Alexan­dra cy­clist Liam Aitch­e­son had another stel­lar year, earn­ing podium spots dur­ing Tour of South­land legs and three sil­ver medals at the Ju­nior World Cham­pi­onships in Scot­land.

LM- Man­iototo Mag­gots: The Man­iototo Mag­gots team were able to back up their Cen­tral Otago premier rugby com­pe­ti­tion ti­tle, crush­ing the Ar­row­town Bulls 27-8 dur­ing this year’s fi­nal. The cherry on the top for the team was win­ning the White Horse Cup and hooker Charles Crutch­ley was named Cen­tral Otago player of the year. - Becky Nixon: Queen­stown hair­dresser Becky Nixon set a new record in the women’s 100 mile di­vi­sion of the Great Naseby Wa­ter Race, fin­ish­ing in 18 hours and 15 min­utes.

NO- New Zealand Golf Open: The New Zealand Open tour­na­ment re­turned to The Hills, in Ar­row­town. The na­tional men’s golf open was played, for the first time world­wide, un­der a pro-am for­mat, which saw 132 am­a­teurs paired with the 132 pro­fes­sion­als for the PGA Tour of Aus­trala­sia event.

P- Pairs fi­nal win: Queen­stown com­bi­na­tion Mar­garet O’Con­nor and Chris­tine Buchanan won the women’s pairs fi­nal at the New Zealand Open bowls tour­na­ment in Auck­land in Novem­ber. - Queen­stown Marathon: The in­au­gu­ral Queen­stown Marathon at­tracted a mas­sive 6000 run­ners. While heavy rain put a damper on things it didn’t stop Palmer­ston North ju­nior doc­tor James Par­sons from win­ning the in­au­gu­ral race in a time of 2 hours 33 min­utes 43 seconds.

- Red Bull De­fi­ance ad­ven­ture race: After two bru­tal days of rac­ing over

QR­some of most gru­elling ter­rain Wanaka has to of­fer, lo­cal pair Braden Cur­rie and Dou­gal Al­lan took out the top spot at the in­au­gu­ral Red Bull De­fi­ance ad­ven­ture race.

- Sochi: The Sochi 2014 Win­ter Olympics New Zealand team was dom­i­nated by Cen­tral Otago and Queen­stown Lakes ath­letes. While no medals were won, the team put in a stir­ling ef­fort for many first time Olympians.

- Tre­ble Cone crowned again: Tre­ble Cone was an­nounced as the win­ner of New Zealand’s Best Ski Re­sort for the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year at the sec­ond an­nual World Ski Awards in Novem­ber.

- Up­hill Bat­tle: The Mir­ror’s very own Jo MacKen­zie-Ma­cLean took on her own sport­ing bat­tle this year, set­ting a goal to com­pete in the 2015 North­burn 50km moun­tain run. Her ups and downs of the chal­lenge have been recorded in her weekly col­umn Up­hill Bat­tle. - Carey Vi­vian: Queen­stown plan­ner Carey Vi­vian kicked off a cam­paign to raise funds while com­plet­ing a 4000km off-road moun­tain bike ride from Cape Reinga to Bluff. Vi­vian, who will at­tempted to com­plete the ride in 42 days star­ing in Fe­bru­ary, will do the ride to raise aware­ness and funds for Global Mo­tor Neu­rone Dis­ease Aware­ness, a dis­ease that struck his fa­ther. - Wells: It wouldn’t be an a-z of sport with­out a men­tion of Wanaka’s favourite freeski­ing fam­ily the Wells. This year Beau-James Wells be­come the third of the four Wells brother to take home the Otago Ju­nior Sports­man of the Year Award. Older brothers By­ron claimed the ti­tle in 2012 and Jossi won it five times be­tween 2006 and 2011, only miss­ing out in 2010. - Xterra: Four Wanaka ath­letes re­turned from the World Xterra Cham-

STUVWX­pi­onships in Hawaii in Oc­to­ber with top 10 places. De­fend­ing world cham­pion Nicky Sa­muels, 31, was third in the elite women’s cat­e­gory. In the age group cat­e­gories were Mike John­ston, sixth in the men’s 45-49, An­drew McLeod, tenth in men’s 55-59, and Fiona Reid, eighth in women’s 45-49 sec­tion.

- Ex­celling Youth Row­ers: Wakatipu High School un­der-17 and un­der-18 row­ing dou­ble of Dy­lan O’Con­nor and Ja­cob O’Flanaghan were named the Team of the Year at the South­land Sec­ondary Schools Sports Awards this year. O’Con­nor was also highly com­mended in the Se­nior Sports Per­son of the Year cat­e­gory. Mean­while Wanaka school boy Ri­ley Bruce, 15, was named Otago’s top ju­nior rower for 2014 after be­ing un­beaten in the un­der 16-sin­gle and the un­der 16-dou­ble. The Mt As­pir­ing un­der-16 dou­ble of Bruce and Nathan Redai, 15, left, were named the top Otago crew.

YZ- GODZone heads to Wanaka. The 2015 GODZone event will kick off in Wanaka in March. The event, has at­tracted 50 fourper­son teams, is part of the Ad­ven­ture Rac­ing World Se­ries and a qual­i­fier for the world cham­pi­onships.

Dou­gal Al­lan, and Braden Cur­rie

Hamish McLean

Erin Greene

Box­ing na­tion­als

Corey Peters

Man­iototo Mag­gots

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