Former Gladstone Primary School and Wairarapa College pupil Fergus Fauvel is making waves in the sport of rowing.
Fauvel, 26, was a member of the Southern RPC premier men's quadruple sculls crew which won the gold medal at the national championships on Lake Ruataniwha last week.
He and fellow crew members Nathan Cohen, Hayden Cohen and Nathan Flannery recorded a time of 5min 52.45s in beating home Auckland RPC (5:54.51) and Central RPC (5:59.80).
"It's a great feeling, it's nice to get one [gold medal] finally. It's special," Fauvel said after the victory.
Fauvel, whose parents Ralph and Viv live at Gladstone, only started rowing five years ago when in his last year of a surveying degree at Otago University. He joined the latter's rowing club as a novice and made rapid progress, much of it as a single sculler in those days.
In 2009 Fauvel was part of an Otago Uni squad which competed in China and the following year he represented New Zealand at the World University Championships in Hungary where he placed fifth in the single scull.
In 2011 Fauvel was a reserve for the New Zealand rowing team which contested the World Cup and World Championship regattas in Europe and last year he was strongly in the reckoning for a place in New Zealand's London Olympic squad, being part of an eight which came very close to earning selection for what was a staggeringly successful regatta for the Kiwis.
The latest success for Fauvel, who is now studying performance music at Waikato University, came after the Southern crew made a decisive push at the 1000m mark where they put a length on their nearest rivals, Auckland. And from there they were always in control, winning by a comfortable margin.
Fauvel was also fourth in the premier men's single scull final.