McDow­ell sets a hot pace

Kapi-Mana News - - SPORT -

Ti­tahi Bay’s Marty McDow­ell won the K1 1000m na­tional ti­tle at the New Zealand ca­noe sprint cham­pi­onships in Ro­torua re­cently.

He came third in the fi­nal on Fe­bru­ary 15, be­hind Aus­tralians Ken Wal­lace and Lach­lan Tame. The 27-year-old was pleased to edge out fel­low Kiwi and Olympian Dar­ryl Fitzger­ald.

‘‘I tried to go out hard off the start and hold the same pace, try­ing not to die at the end,’’ McDow­ell said.

‘‘The body pretty much blew with 200 me­tres to go, so I was just hang­ing on.

‘‘Hav­ing the Aussie guys here def­i­nitely picked up the pace – Kenny’s ranked third in the world, so they’re the bench­mark of where we need to be.’’

McDow­ell is en­joy­ing his pad­dling re­nais­sance and would love an­other crack on the in­ter­na­tional stage.

‘‘They say kayak­ers peak at 30, al­though it was a 37-year-old who won at the last Olympics.

‘‘It’s just ex­pe­ri­ence, learn­ing how to train and race bet­ter. Rac­ing is prob­a­bly the main one for me – I’ve been pretty hit and miss in the past so I’ve re­ally been work­ing on my con­sis­tency and fig­ur­ing that out.’’

He capped a mem­o­rable af­ter­noon by help­ing a com­bined K4 – with Dar­ryl and Jar­rod Fitzger­ald and Zac Quick­enden – win the fi­nal race of the day, the K4 1000m.

The cham­pi­onships at­tracted nearly 300 pad­dlers from around New Zealand, con­tin­u­ing a no­table rise in num­bers over re­cent years.

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