Fo­cus on fours

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT - By KRIS DANDO

To­bias Wehr-Can­dler says the time is coming for a New Zealand row­ing four to hit the lime­light.

The Pukerua Bay 23- year- old, based at the high-per­for­mance cen­tre at Lake Kara­piro near Cam­bridge since 2008, has been slog­ging away in fours and eights. He says the New Zealand eight he was a part of in 2009 achieved much on the world stage, but his fo­cus re­cently has been the fours.

He teamed up with Shaun Kirkham, Alex Kennedy and Olympian Eric Mur­ray to blitz the op­po­si­tion and claim the fours ti­tle at na­tion­als in Twizel last month.

‘‘It was a great combo, although we only came to­gether about two weeks be­fore [Twizel]. Eric put his hand up and fit­ted in com­fort­ably, he’s ob­vi­ously an ex­cep­tional ath­lete but it did take him a lit­tle bit to get used to what we were do­ing.’’

This week Wehr-Can­dler will be part of a dif­fer­ent com­bi­na­tion that will tackle a World Cup event in Syd­ney – join­ing Adam Tripp, Bobby Kells and Jade Eru. He says they have high ex­pec­ta­tions, which comes with be­ing a part of the high­per­for­mance group at Kara­piro.

‘‘The en­vi­ron­ment is fan­tas­tic; it’s very gru­elling and it can spit you out if you’re not up to it. But I’ve en­joyed the chal­lenge . . . I’ve been train­ing hard over the sum­mer, win­ning lo­cal re­gat­tas in the build-up to Twizel.’’

Wehr-Can­dler has one eye on the world champs in South Korea in Au­gust but the Olympics in Rio in 2016 is the ul­ti­mate goal.

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