The Mackenzie turned on a stellar weekend for this years’ Meridian South Island Championships where 1,281 competitors from 41 clubs and schools enjoyed beautiful conditions for the weekend of racing.
Standout performers Rangi Ruru Girls’ School took home gold in all of the girls age group sweep events. The U16 8+ combination (G Bethell, N Vance, C Muir, P Cross, Z Frost, G Beckett, A Hawkesby, A Acland and coxswain B Pye) put in a particularly impressive performance, winning their final in a time of 7:09.69 with a 15 second margin back to second place getters St Margarets College. While there was no age group event for the pairs, the Columba College crew of Siena Snow and Caitlin O’Brien were the winners of the Womens Club 2- race with a 20 second margin over the remainder of their field. The Womens Senior 2- race was also dominated by school crews, with Christchurch Girls’ High combination Emily Bowden and Orla Fitzgerald taking line honours.
Regatta officials found a few safety concerns over the two days, with non-compliance around the heel restraint requirements and a few medallists were caught out with underweight boats. As the temperatures climbed there were a few young ones feeling the heat – a timely reminder for all athletes, coaches and support teams about the importance of being sun smart and diligent with post-race recovery. Otherwise, there were no accidents and all involved enjoyed seeing out the full programme of racing.
A number of new volunteers tried out different roles which was a great help. SI Rowing still need more volunteers and it would be great to see anyone wanting to become a licensed official jump on board (see our Volunteers page). As always, a big thank you to all of those that helped out – the regatta cannot be run without you!
Photos courtesy of Steve McArthur www.rowingcelebration.com