Tauranga's season-opening Tinman triathlon has been given a major boost with major sponsors Craigs Investment Partners throwing a $1000 first prize at both men's and women's winners.
With previous winners James and Mark Bowstead and current Port of Tauranga half ironman champion Michael Poole having committed, the prizemoney jump is expected to give a major lift to the depth of the field.
Prizemoney will be awarded to the top-five in both divisions of the event, which will be run on Sunday, December 5.
The Craigs Corporate Challenge is also back, with corporate teams from the Bay and beyond invited to take the challenge and participate in the Sprint Teams event for the Craigs Corporate Trophy - won in its inaugural year by KPMG Tauranga.
Poole, meanwhile, had a solid race on a tough day at the Gold Coast half ironman at the weekend, with the 19-year-old cramping on the run after problems with his feed stations.
Callum Millward was the best of the Kiwis in second, while Mark Bowstead was fifth.
Bay sides dominant
Bay of Plenty representative rugby teams grabbed three wins and scored nearly a century of points in stunning spring conditions over the weekend.
At Blake Park in Mount Maunganui, the Bay Development team produced one of their finest performances in a number of seasons, when they defeated Auckland. The vital win booked the Bay second XV a place in this weekend's playoffs.
The curtainraiser produced another outstanding Bay of Plenty performance, when the Bay under-18 team cemented second place in the Northern Region competition with a 45-31 victory over Counties Manukau.
Bay's seven tries were scored by Nathan Harris, Aaron Carroll, Matt Axtens, Te Aihi Toma, Jacob Proctor, Marnus Hanley and Mike Shaw, with Jordan Ngatai-Poi converting four tries and Te Aihi Toma slotting a fifth conversion.
There was also a winning performance by the Bay of Plenty under-20 side, who beat Northland 20-5 at the Pakuranga Rugby Club in Auckland.
A try apiece went to Daryl Albert and Andrew Tuise, with two penalties and two conversions to Nick Evemy. On Sunday the two youngest Bay of Plenty representative squads had their turn in the limelight, when the under-14 and under-15 teams playing their Waikato counterparts in Putaruru.
Development: BOP 29 (Chris Elvin, Chad Tuoro tries; Nick McCashin 5 pens 2 cons) Auckland 27.
Under 20: BOP 20 (Daryl Albert, Andrew Tuise tries; Nick Evemy 2 pens 2 cons) Northland 5.
Under 18: BOP 45 (Nathan Harris, Aaron Carroll, Matt Axtens, Te Aihi Toma, Jacob Proctor, Marnus Hanley, Mike Shaw, Jordan Ngatai-Poi 4 con, T Toma con) Counties Manukau 31.
Under 15: Waikato 32 BOP 12 (Jayden Tane, Wemin Kapia tries; Peeti Delamere-Keane con).
Under 14: Waikato 27 BOP 14 (Hamish Symes, Caleb Aperahama tries; Rikihana Borrell 2 con).
National medal haul
Bayswim squads have gone on a well-earned break after completing a very successful national age-group championships in Wellington.
The squad returned with 10 Bay of Plenty age-group records, five Bay Of Plenty open records and one New Zealand age-group record.
Nathan Capp (Greerton Swim Club) took over 3 seconds off the New Zealand Record for 17 years 400IM clocking under the 4.20 mark with 4.19.91.
This time is the 28th fastest short course 400IM swam in the world thus far in 2010. Capp then backed up to post an impressive 15.22.79 for the 1500m freestyle.
This time broke Kane Radford's Bay of Plenty open record by a mere 0.17 of a second.
Taylor Armstrong (Greerton Swim Club) returned to form to break the 400 freestyle, 200 freestyle, 100 butterfly and 50 butterfly BOP records for 16 year old girls.
In addition she medalled in the 100 freestyle and 100 backstroke.
Aaryn Gandy (Whakatane Swim Club) broke the BOP age and open records in both the 50 and 100 backstroke. His younger brother William Gandy took almost a second off the BOP age record for the 50 breaststroke.
Other Bayswim members to make national finals were Stephanie Capp and Danielle O'Connor, along with the 4 x 50 Freestyle and the 4 x 50 Medley relay teams for Greerton Swim Club.
Otumoetai Swim Club's Jessica Miller and Brittney Goodrick also grabbed four medals.
Miller won three medals in the 14 year old girls' competition, with gold in the 800 freestyle, silver in the 400m freestyle and bronze in the 200m freestyle.
Goodrick came home with a bronze medal in the 15 year old girls 400m individual medley.
Cameron Witney and Harris Lin were also part of the Otumoetai swim team, recording personal bests and placing 17th and 11th respectively.
Club tennis starts
Nick Brown began the Bay of Plenty interclub tennis season in style on Saturday, helping his Mount Maunganui club to a 6-0 win over Rotorua/Lynmore.
Brown beat Jordan Katipa 6-3 6-1, then paired with Steve McCashin for a hard-fought 7-5 6-3 doubles win over Andy Russell and Sean Martin.
Hamish Fox had a blinder at No4 for the Mount, beating Kevin McLoughlin 6-1 6-1.
Gate Pa struggled in their match with Welcome Bay, losing 6-0, with observers dryly noting the best aspect from a Gate Pa point of view being the meal Welcome Bay put on afterwards.
Whakatane's Sam Barr beat Otumoetai's Jason Young 6-3 6-2 in the clash of the No1s as Whakatane had a valuable 4-2 victory at home, although Otumoetai No2 Josh White was strong in beating Paul Haslam 6-4 6-3.
Whakatane's return to the women's grade was a tough one, losing 5-1 to Rotorua Panthers.
Good doubles form helped Tauranga Lawn beat Mount Maunganui 4-2, after their singles matches were left even.
Natalie Rodovanovich's hard-fought three-set win over Jody Kendall at No2 was Papamoa's only bright spot in their 5-1 loss to Otumoetai.
Mt Maunganui bt Rotorua-Lynmore 6-0 (Nick Brown b Jordan Katipa 6-3 6-1, Steve McCashin b Andy Russell 6-3 6-4, Rosstan Mazey b Manaia Hiha 7-5 6-1, Hamish Fox b Kevin McLoughlin 6-1 6-1, Brown/McCashin b Russell/Sean Martin 7-5 6-3, Mazey/Fox b Katipa-Hiha 6-3 7-5)
Homewood Katikati lost to Tauranga Lawn 5-1 (Phil Salmon lost to Jamie Yates Jamie Yates 6-0 6-0, Peter O'Dea lost to Jacob Carey 6-1 1-6 6-4, Anton Mitchell lost to Jason Helms 6-1 6-2, Steve Bowen lost to Aaron Milne 3-6 6-4 6-4, Salmon/Craig Workman lost to Yates/Allan Clark 5-7 6-4 6-1, O'Dea-Bowen b Helms-Milne 6-2 6-2)
Gate Pa lost to Welcome Bay 6-0 (Mike Owen lost to Brett Hampton 6-3 6-2, Tony McMurtrie lost to Steve Lasslett 6-1 6-3, Gary Zimmerman lost to Wayne Jefferson 6-2 6-1, Grant Louie lost to Raul Reyes 6-2 6-1, Owen/Zimmerman lost to Lasslett/Richard Kidd 6-3 6-2, Tony McMurtrie/Andrew McMurtrie lost to Jefferson/Guy Henderson 7-6 2-6 6-2)
Whakatane bt Otumoetai 4-2 (Sam Barr b Jason Young 6-3 6-2, Paul Haslam lost to Josh White 6-4 6-3, Mark Ratana b Sam Daly 6-4 6-2, Ben Howe b Ian McGregor 6-4 7-6, Howe/Barr lost to Young/White 6-7 7-5 6-3, Haslam/Ratana b Daly/McGregor 6-2 6-2)
Rotorua Panthers b Whakatane 5-1 (Zana Douglas lost to Alex Howe 6-1 retired injured, Leona Kaye-Davis b Vicky Murray 6-2 6-0, JoAnne Douglas b Nicola Bettelheim 6-0 6-1, Lara Wild b Zoe Howe 6-0 6-0, Douglas-Douglas b Howe-Howe 6-2 5-7 6-2, Kaye-Davis/Wild b Murray/Bettelheim 6-0 6-0)
Tauranga Lawn b Mt Maunganui 4-2 (Beth Hughes lost to Katerina Rockova 6-1 6-3, Maureen South b Judy Randell 6-3 6-0, Suzanne Lugton b Michelle Handley 6-0 6-0, Anna Mahon lost to Dale Mallett 6-3 6-2, Hughes/South b Rockova/Randell 6-4 7-5, Lugton/Mahon b Handley/Mallett 6-3 6-2)
Otumoetai b Papamoa 5-1 (Casey Tarau b Dorothea Collier 6-2 6-3, Jody Kendall lost to Natalie Rodovanovich 4-6 6-4 7-6, Ashleigh Harvey b Charlotte James 6-2 6-0, Sita Clark won by default, Tarau/Kendall b Collier/Rodovanovich 6-3 6-2, Clark/Rosa Taringa vs James/Win Spencer 7-5 6-4)
Mount begin strongly
Mount Maunganui picked up where they left off on the first day of the Western Bay cricket season on Saturday.
Batting first against Te Puke, the defending Baker Cup champions posted 231/6, with Peter Drysdale blasting 81. Captain Sheldon Kearns also took to the Te Puke bowling posting 75.
Dane Sorrenson's 60 stood out like a beacon as the visitors to Blake Park were removed for 125. Alex Gooding was in good form with the ball, returning 3/27.
Williams Cup champions IMF Element Cadets won a low-scoring encounter with Eves Realty Greerton at Pemberton Park, with the home side making first use of the artificial surface and being all out for 99, with former Tauranga Boys' College allrounder Brett Hampton scoring a gritty 37.
Josh Christensen led the way with the ball for Cadets, taking 4/22. Cadets lost six wickets on the way to victory, with Northern Districts left-armer Trent Boult showing his all-round skills by top-scoring with 28.
East Bay United, the big improvers of last year's Baywide championship, carried on their good form with victory against Tauranga Boys' at Nicholson Field.
The home side batted first and were dismissed for 157, with Cameron Neal top-scoring with 34. Paul Inglis grabbed 3/26 and Dean Butterworth took 3/27.
East Bay United's master blaster Alex Yates smashed an unbeaten 74 as his side grabbed a five-wicket win.
Mount Maunganui 231/6 (Peter Drysdale 81, Sheldon Kearns 75; Andrew McKay 2/27, Steven Rae 2/48) bt Te Puke 125 (Dane Sorrenson 60; Alex Gooding 3/27, Dale Swan 2/29)
Tauranga Boys College 157 (Cameron Neal 34, Elliot Timoti 28, Joe Carter 24; Paul Inglis 3/26, Dean Butterworth 3/27) lost to East Bay United 158/5 (Alex Yates 74no, Dan Simpson 21, Alex Yates 20; Josh Dwight 3/28)
Eves Realty Greerton 99 (Brett Hampton 37; Josh Christensen 4/22, Nick Earl 3/10, Jono Boult 3/15) lost to IMF Element Cadets 100/6 (Trent Boult 28, Ben Christensen 20; James Birchall 2/12, Brett Hampton 2/19, Shane Wineti 2/34)
Surf juniors do well
Bay of Plenty junior surf lifesavers had a great start to the season at the State New Zealand Pool Championships in Wellington over the weekend.
Papamoa's Mason Pickering dominated the under-16 division, winning gold medals in the 50m and 100m manikin carry without fins and the 50m swim with fins.
Mount Maunganui's Matthew Hyde and George Williams went even better, picking up four golds each, while Jess Miller, Natalie Peat and Vivien Conway were other locals to win individual events.
Mount finished fourth overall on 489 points, Papamoa seventh on 318.5, Waihi picked up 20 points and Omanu 16.
Lyall Bay's 83-strong squad of athletes helped them accumulate 1192 points over the three-day event to again win the overall title.
50m Swim with Fins.
Masters Men. Matt Warren (Paekakariki) 25.14 1, Ross Fearon (Mairangi Bay) 25.47 2, Greg Akroyd (Papamoa) 26.17 3.
Under 16 Men. Mason Pickering (Papamoa) 23.17 1, Ben McDonald-Sporle (Mairangi Bay) 23.60 2, Lauchlan Feather (Australia) 23.79 3.
Under 16 Women. Vivien Conway (Mt Maunganui) 25.60 1, Natalie Peat (Papamoa) 25.64 2, Michaela Aitken (Papamoa) 26.25 3.
Under 14 Men. Matthew Hyde (Mt Maunganui) 24.70 1, Daniel Maynard-Northover (Waikanae) 24.83 2, Nicholas Crott (Lyall Bay) 24.91 3.
Under 12 Boys. George Williams (Mt Maunganui) 27.37 1, Jack Thorpe (Wainui) 28.37 2, Josh Pickett (Waikanae) 28.41 3.
Under 11 Boys. Declan Demster (Waimairi) 29.54 1, Billy Simpson (Lyall Bay) 29.71 2, Lochlainn O'Connor (Waihi) 30.40 3.
200m Swim with Obstacle.
Under 19 Women. Laura Quilter (Wainui) 2:22.32 1, Carina Doyle (St Clair) 2:22.67 2, Dannielle O'Connor (Omanu) 2:23.27 3.
Under 16 Women. Jessica Miller (Mt Maunganui) 2:24.07 1, Natalie Peat (Papamoa) 2:26.79 2, Tayla Radovanovich (Paekakariki) 2:33.11 3.
200m Swim with Obstacle.
Under 19 Women, Laura Quilter (Wainui) 2:22.32 1, Carina Doyle (St Clair) 2:22.67 2, Dannielle O'Connor (Omanu) 2:23.27 3.
Under 16 Women. Jessica Miller (Mt Maunganui) 2:24.07 1, Natalie Peat (Papamoa) 2:26.79 2, Tayla Radovanovich (Paekakariki) 2:33.11 3.
100m Swim with Obstacle.
Under 14 Men. Matthew Hyde (Mt Maunganui) 1:02.98 1, Nicholas Crott (Lyall Bay) 1:05.78 2, Jonathan Rogers (Lyall Bay) 1:06.22 3.
Under 12 Boys. George Williams (Mt Maunganui) 34.11 1, Lewis Clareburt (Lyall Bay) 34.61 2, Hamish Miller (Mt Maunganui) 36.05 3.
Under 12 Girls. Katie Trott (Paekakariki) 35.75 1, Georgia Aitken (Papamoa) 38.01 2, Julia Tairua-Doyle (Piha) 39.08 3.
4x50m Medley Relay.
Mixed. Waikanae 1:52.77 1, St Clair 1:55.52 2, Mt Maunganui (Callum Knox/Katrina Madill/Brooke Shergold/Cameron Witney) 2:02.46 3.
Under 16 Women. Mt Maunganui (Vivien Conway/Amber Hyde/Hannah Meredith/Jessica Miller) 2:02.55 1, Waikanae 2:04.82 2, Lyall Bay 2:05.35 3.
Under 12 Mixed. Lyall Bay 2:16.53 1, Mt Maunganui (Erin Conway/Hamish Miller/Kate Miller/George Williams) 2:24.79 2, Westshore 2:40.28 3.
Masters men: Paekakariki 18.62 1, Waikanae 19.14 2, Papamoa (Ross Merrett/Matthew Pickering) 19.69 3.
U19 men: Waikanae 15.64 1, Piha 15.87 2, Mt Maunganui (Callum Knox/Scott Miller) 16.52 3.
U19 Women: Paekakariki 17.69 1, Mt Maunganui (Shamay King/Cara Ryan) 18.42 2, 3 Paekakarik 21.17 3.
U16 men: New Plymouth Old Boys 16.64sec 1, Paekakariki 18.34 2, Mt Maunganui (Sam Roy/Scott Witney) 22.06 3.
U16 Women: Sumner 19.15 1, St Clair 24.43 2, Mt Maunganui (Adriana Melissa Ryan) 26.35 3.
4x50m Obstacle Relay.
U16 Men. New Plymouth Old Boys 1:58.63 1, Paekakariki 1:59.91 2, Papamoa (Ben Johnston/Seth Merrett/Mason Pickering/Hamish Smith) 2:00.90 3.
U16 Women: Papamoa (Michaela Aitken/Simone Couvee/Kahleia Josephson/Natalie Peat) 2:11.60 1, Lyall Bay 2:12.03 2, Waikanae 2:12.16 3.
U14 men: Lyall Bay 2:07.48 1, Waikanae 2:11.61 2, Mt Maunganui (Mickey Ellis/Matthew Hyde/Scott Miller/Keegan Witney) 2:19.45 3.
U14 Mixed. St Clair 2:35.22 1, Mt Maunganui (Adriana Bird/Julia Conway/Daniel Miller/Todd Reardon) 2:47.62 2, Waimairi 3.
U12 Mixed. Lyall Bay 2:30.50 1, Mt Maunganui (Erin Conway/Hamish Miller/Kate Miller/George Williams) 2:39.19 2, Westshore 2:45.10 3.
50m Brick Carry without Fins.
U14 men: Matthew Hyde (Mt Maunganui) 34.52 1, Andrew Tremabath (South Brighton) 36.46 2, Daniel Maynard-Northover (Waikanae) 37.23 3.
U12 men: George Williams (Mt Maunganui) 35.97 1, Lewis Clareburt (Lyall Bay) 38.38 2, Josh Pickett (Waikanae) 39.89 3.
U12 Women: Katie Trott (Paekakariki) 40.04 1, Julia Tairua-Doyle (Piha) 40.37 2, Georgia Aitken (Papamoa) 42.36 3.
U11 men: Declan Dempster (Waimairi) 39.73 1, Conor Dempster (Waimairi) 45.01 2, Lochlainn O'Connor (Waihi) 45.33 3.
50m Manikin Carry without Fins.
U16 men: Mason Pickering (Papamoa) 40.20 1, Hamish Smith (Papamoa) 41.84 2, Sean Newcombe (Piha) 41.88 3.
U16 Women: Karly Maxwell (Lyall Bay) 44.34 1, Natalie Peat (Papamoa) 48.89 2, Michaela Aitken (Papamoa) 51.12 3.
100m Tube Swim with Patient and Fins.
Under 12 Men. Mt Maunganui (Hamish Miller/George Williams) 1:18.37 1, Lyall Bay 1:18.70 2, Wainui 1:23.45 3.
Under 14 Men. Mt Maunganui (Mickey Ellis/Matthew Hyde) 1:06.92 1, Waikanae 1:11.42 2, Waikanae 1:12.15 3.
100m Manikin Tow with Fins.
Under 16 men: Mason Pickering (Papamoa) 1:08.36 1, Sean Newcombe (Piha) 1:09.53 2, Kurtis Imrie (Paekakariki) 1:09.87 3.
Under 16 Women: Natalie Peat (Papamoa) 1:14.29 1, Katie Blackburne (Waikanae) 1:16.39 2, Ashlee McArthur (Waikanae) 1:17.31 3.
Under 19 Women: Lisa Blakemore (Piha) 1:11.83 1, Carina Doyle (St Clair) 1:13.08 2, Dannielle O'Connor (Omanu) 1:14.81 3.
Masters men: Matt Warren (Paekakariki) 1:10.92 1, Glen Cadwallader (Waikanae) 1:10.98 2, Greg Akroyd (Papamoa) 1:11.09 3.
Final points: Lyall Bay 1192, Waikanae 874, Paekakariki 674, Mount Maunganui 489, St Clair 477.5, Piha 464, Papamoa 318.5, Westshore 303.5, South Brighton 221.5, Wainui 221, Mairangi Bay 170.5, New Plymouth Old Boys 135, Worser Bay 128, Titahi Bay 122, Waimairi 95, Midway 89.5, Sumner 85, Fitzroy 81, Oreti 76, Waihi 20, Omanu 16, Red Beach 13.
Bears collect title Auckland Waitakere Bears won the two-day Tauranga premier mens' Softball Classic at the Carlton Street Reserve at the weekend.
Featuring the formidable Shannon brothers Heini and Patrick, the Bears backed up from their Auckland Mens' FastPitch competition win last season by beating Auckland United 2-1 in the final, scoring the winning run in the tiebreaker eighth innings.
The Bay of Plenty team had a good tournament, beating Hamilton Marlinz 8-0, and Howick 11-10. They were beaten 5-4 by Northcote and 8-2 by Eden Roskill.
The Frank Winiata Memorial Tournament will be played this weekend.
Saturday: Howick 9 Eden Roskill 8, Howick 11 Marlinz 6, Northcote 5 Bay of Plenty 4, Bears 6 Marist 4, Northcote 1 Eden-Roskill 0, Bears 11 Ramblers 4, United 9 Marist 2, United 2 Ramblers 1, Howick 6 Northcote 2, Eden Roskill 8 Bay of Plenty 2.
Sunday: Eden Roskill 11 Marlinz 1, Bay of Plenty 11 Howick 10, Ramblers 10. Marist 1. Semifinals: United 4 Northcote 3, Bears 6 Howick 5. Final: Bears 2 United 1.