New Zealand's elite women's kayakers have made an outstanding start to their European campaign with four gold medals in the opening World Cup regatta in Hungary.

The quartet of Lisa Carrington, Aimee Fisher, Kayla Imrie and Caitlin Ryan ended their programme by dominating the K4 500m final.

The New Zealanders led from early in the race, with double Olympic champion Carrington in the front seat.

The Australian quartet finished strongly but were never a chance to catch the Kiwis, who clocked 1min 29.433s. Australia were 1.039s back in second with Hungary 2.289s away in third.


Earlier in the final day, Carrington and Fisher combined powerfully to win the K2 200m sprint. They won in 35.935s from two Hungarian crews.

Ryan won the K1 500m marquee event a day earlier in 1:46.576 while Carrington and Imrie teamed up to win the K2 500m title.

"Whenever I get in the K1, I harness my inner-Lisa," North Shore paddler Ryan said of three-time Olympic medallist Carrington, who finished with three golds at the regatta, two more than Fisher, Imrie and Ryan.

"It's a big feat to live up to her paddling, so whenever I get an opportunity I really want to follow in her suit and build a really good team."

Carrington hadn't raced in a two-seater with Imrie before, but it didn't show.

"It's awesome that we know we can paddle together and for it to go as well as it did," Carrington said.

"Every partner I've had has had different skill bases, and it's really nice to learn new ways of working together as a team.

"I think it's just awesome to be able to use your whole tool kit and to keep challenging those tool skills in a team boat."


Paralympic paddler Scott Martlew bagged a silver medal in the KL2 200m final, in 41.51s to give New Zealand a male presence on the dais.

New Zealand's haul of four gold and a silver left them third on the medal table behind Hungary (four gold, eight silver, 12 bronze) and Spain (4/2/2).

The second and final cup regatta is in Duisburg, Germany next weekend.