Tomorrows stars the focus as rowing sees huge numbers at Mighty River Power Junior Regatta

Tuesday 22 February 2011, 1:54PM

By Rowing New Zealand



One of the huge and positive spin-offs of the 2010 rowing world championships has been oversubscribed junior regattas this season as youngsters strive to become the next Murray, Bond, Drysdale, Haigh or Scown inspired by the efforts on the water of their heroes.

The inaugural Mighty River Power Junior Regatta is no exception. The world championships have had a huge positive effect on entry numbers. It takes place this weekend at Mighty River Domain, Lake Karapiro and has attracted another huge entry across no fewer than 48 categories of racing, with two days of rowing taking place on Saturday and Sunday. It’s also seen rowing world championship bronze medallist Emma Twigg take up an event delivery role, working for regatta sponsor, Mighty River Power.

Twigg has been working closely with organisers at Lake Karapiro to encourage more youngsters to race at the regatta and to raise the profile of one of the country’s biggest junior rowing events. She’ll also be on the lookout for the stars of tomorrow and is looking forward to being on the banks of the lake for a change.

“It’s been great to be involved and we do have a fantastic entry this weekend from all over the North Island and that’s a great indication of one of the real positives from the world championships. There are more juniors racing at this level than for some years. It should be quite a spectacle.”

Twigg plans to bring along some of her New Zealand rowing squad team mates along to the regatta to meet the young athletes. “That’s never a bad idea,” she added. “It’s always interesting to see who is going well and in what boats and it’s very likely indeed there will be young talent there that could well represent the country at the 2016 Olympic Games and beyond. We’re always keen to see the up and coming stars who might give us a hard time in the future!”

The Junior rowing season will culminate in the Aon Maadi Cup at Lake Karapiro at the end of March, and organisers say they expect bumper entries there too.

NZ rowing squad members will be onsite and signing autographs on Sunday.