Nearly 30 Bay of Plenty sports people, from a variety of different sporting codes, are the recipients of the first round of BayTrust athlete, coach and official scholarships for 2018.

Of those, five are from Rotorua. They are Sam Munday (sport climbing), Kyra Mita (waka ama/white water rafting), Riley Martin (crossfit), David Boles (swimming) and Patrick Baylis (swimming).

The BayTrust Scholarships are funded from contributions to Sport Bay of Plenty's CoachForce programme.

The aim is to help and support Bay of Plenty sporting talent to achieve on the international stage and allows coaches and officials to develop new skills that can benefit the sporting community.

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Of the 50 applications received, 21 athletes, seven coaches and one official were selected for scholarships.

Sport Bay of Plenty community coaching adviser Shan Jensen-Loach said the team were "really pleased" with the number of applications – particularly with the inclusion of
officials for the first time this year.

Other recipients include 2017 Bay of Plenty Sports Award winner Hayden Wilde (triathlon) and 2016 winner Elin Tawharu (surfing), as well as 2017 finalists Bae Fountain (water polo), Phoenix Paniora (volleyball) and Damian Torwick (canoe slalom).

Official Joanne Miller (surf lifesaving) is the inaugural officials scholarship recipient, while judo, golf, squash and taekwondo are represented in the coach scholarships.

When it came to the selection process, meeting the criteria was a crucial first step, Jensen-Loach said.

She said many of the applicants who were declined this round were not for a lack of skill or talent, but because they did not meet the eligibility criteria firstly.

Athlete scholarship applications are open to any young athlete from the Bay of
Plenty aged 16 to 23 years, who has achieved national representation at their sport, compete internationally, and live permanently in the Bay of Plenty region.

The coach and official scholarships are for coaches and officials currently coaching and officiating at a recognised and endorsed level, live in the Bay of Plenty region and that the development opportunity should have a significant impact on their respective sporting communities.

Full details about scholarship applications for the second round for 2018 will become available on the Sport Bay of Plenty website (www.sportbop.co.nz) from September.

Rotorua recipients:
Patrick Baylis
Paddy has been selected for the NZ Open Swim Team to attend the Oceania Champs in Papua New Guinea this June, and is also training hard to qualify for the Junior Pan Pacifics the following month. Due to his talents in and out of the pool, Paddy was recruited and obtained a scholarship to attend Pomona College in the USA. He will start his liberal arts degree there in September 2018, while continuing to train hard to make the 2020 Olympics.

David Boles
David, a Year 13 John Paul College student, has had an impressive swim season. As the Swimming New Zealand (SNZ) Open Water champ for his age group in the 5km and 10km events, and a bronze medalist in two events at the SNZ National Champs, David will be representing his country at the Oceania Open Water Champs in Papua New Guinea this June.

Riley Martin
Crossfit runs in the family, with Riley, 16, following his brother Bayley, to attend the 2018 Reebok Crossfit World games in Wisconsin, USA. Riley has been selected after a five-week worldwide competition to compete in the 16 - 17 year age group and is building towards his 2019 dream to obtain the Fittest Teen title.

Kyra Mita
With a number of impressive performances in the waka at NZ Sprint Nationals, Kyra qualified to represent New Zealand at the IVF World Champs in Tahiti in June. Her ongoing performances not only impressed selectors for waka ama, but she was selected to join the U23 Okere Women's White Water Rafting team to paddle at the World Champs in Argentina in November.

Sam Munday
It appears that even a fear of heights couldn't stop this climber from pursuing his dreams. Sam is representing New Zealand in China in Open Bouldering/Open Speed May 2018 and has just qualified for the World Youth Climbing Championships in Russia in August. He is passionate about his sport, and accredits his success to an amazing coach and mentor.

Full recipient list:
Alice Bain, Bethlehem, beach volleyball
Patrick Baylis, Rotorua, swimming
Charlie Bell, Te Puna, canoe slalom
David Boles, Rotorua, swimming
Jack Dangen, Te Puna, canoe slalom
Bae Fountain, Papamoa, water polo
Lachlan Haycock, Tauranga, triathlon
Tayla Hudson, Kawerau, touch rugby
Hayley Mackey, Whakatane, judo
Riley Martin, Rotorua, crossfit
Kyra Mita, Rotorua, waka ama/white water rafting
Sam Munday, Rotorua, sport climbing
Phoenix Paniora, Kawerau, Volleyball
Briana Perry, Pyes Pa, indoor cricket
Caelan Potts, Matua, tennis
Mia Pugh, Welcome Bay, open water swimming
Sarah Stratton, Bethlehem, volleyball
Elin Tawharu, Mount Maunganui, surfing.
Glenn Templeton, Katikati, squash
Damian Torwick, Tauriko, canoe slalom
Hayden Wilde, Whakatane, triathlon

BayTrust Coach and Officials Scholarships:
Coach Ashleigh Dunston, Welcome Bay
Coach Christine Young, Tauranga
Coach Jay Carter, Greerton
Coach Kim Kingsley, Mount Maunganui
Coach Michael Dunston, Welcome Bay
Coach Neisha Brooking, Whakatane
Coach Nicholas Davey, Papamoa
Official Joanne Miller, Papamoa