Porirua paddlers shine at nationals
Porirua Canoe Club paddlers impressed at the long distance waka ama nationals in Northland over Easter.
In the W6 32km masters women’s grade, Taimania grabbed the gold by just a whisker and NgaAri, in the W2 18km open women’s grade, nailed their victory by more than eight seconds.
Te Pua Inano won silver in the W6 32km open women’s grade, as did Marianna Hodges in the 18km open women and Lawrence Hynes in the 18km masters men. Turi Hodges was sixth in that latter event.
Bronze medals were earned by Ariana Ransom (15km junior 19 women), Takitimu (W6 junior 16 women) and Te Rau Matangi (W6 26-30km masters men).
More than 600 paddlers from 35 clubs took to the water off Ruakaka in what organisers said was the biggest turnout ever for the long distance champs.
The sport overall was continuing to flourish, said Lara Collins, chief executive of Waka Ama New Zealand.
‘‘ We’ve made a big push throughout New Zealand.
‘‘It’s great to see crowds and clubs turn up in such big numbers,’’ she said.
‘‘Over the past few years clubs have been popping up all over the place and they’ve progressed hugely in a short time,’’ Collins said.
Porirua Canoe Kayak Club’s Te Pua Inano, who came second in the W6 open women’s 26-30km final. From front, Marianna Hodges, Mereana Hodges, Ngahuia Henare, Amiria Salzmann, Shaianne Kiel and Ariana Ransom.