Hereworth boys take on the snow
While most primary school children were tucked up in bed last week, a team of Hereworth School boys were already up and on their way to hit the slopes on Mount Ruapehu.
Schools from around the North Island were participating in the Central Plateau Ski Champs, run each year as a fundraiser by the Hilltop School Ski Team. Hereworth gathers a team of keen skiers each year to participate in the four categories of races — Primary (Year 1 -6) boys, Primary girls, Intermediate (Years 7 and 8) boys, and Intermediate girls. Within each category the children compete in an in-zone or out-of-zone section.
“Naturally, the races are dominated by the in-zone schools which are defined by those schools that fall within the Central Plateau footprint. However, there is always a good contingent of out-of-zone schools who enter small teams of skiers, including Hereworth,” says Hereworth director of sport, Lincoln Doull.
Lincoln accompanied the boys up the mountain and says this year’s results were particularly exciting, with Year 4 “fearless” 8-year-old student Oliver Wilkins winning the out-of-zone primary section, beating boys three years older than himself.
“A remarkable achievement,” Lincoln says.
In the intermediate out-ofzone race the Hereworth boys won all three podium places, with Herbie Coates in first place, Luke Wilkins second and Will Lowry third. To cap off a day of achievements, Herbie’s time was the fastest across the in-zone and out-of-zone competitors.
Organisers believe the event is a way to get children involved in skiing from a junior school level and to be able to use the winter wonderland that is on their doorsteps. The championships are described as a fun, relaxed day that allows children to represent their school without the pressure of being a professional ski racer.
Over the years, the continued support of parents and sponsors has allowed the event to flourish and helped the confidence of novice skiers to grow. Every competitor receives a certificate to reward them for their participation, with podium place winners receiving a medal and trophy. The children get to meet new skiers their age from different schools, are able to be a little competitive and have the chance to try out some of their newly acquired race skills.
Hereworth School competitors in the annual Central Plateau Ski Champs race on Mount Ruapehu.