Three Hamilton students have been the highlight for New Zealand at the recent Junior Rowing World Championships in the Czech Republic, bringing home silver in the Men's Coxless Four.
The crew was made up of Hamilton Boys' High School students Flynn Watson, Elliott Jenkins and Campbell Crouch, along with Will Gilbert from Christchurch Boys' High School.
The four were the top performers from a New Zealand team that also brought home two other bronze medals.
The team did not expect to bring home a medal, having had no real experience against some of the other countries at the tournament.
"We didn't expect it at all," Flynn said.
"We knew there would be tough competition, but being so far away and not getting regular competition against these countries we didn't know what to expect."
But following a good start, the foursome knew they had a chance.
"After our heat we knew we had a good chance and that it was all about racing our own race and not worrying about the other teams," Flynn said.
During the final the boys faced strong competition from the European teams, with them having to chase eventual winners Britain for most of the way, as well as holding off bronze medalists Italy at the end.
"At the start we expected to be behind. I think the other crews had half a length on us. We knew Italy were very fast off the start.
"In the second and third 500 we slowly gained on other crews and made our way through those boats.
"In the last 500 we really just went for it," Campbell said after the race.
Despite not winning they thought it was a great opportunity to get a feel for what international rowing events would be like in the future.
"It was a great experience for us as a crew. It really allowed us to push us to the best of our abilities and see where we sit in the world," Flynn said.
The tournament was held in Racice, Czech Republic during mid-August where 20 young rowers competed for New Zealand.