Five new future Whanganui champions have been found and given a financial leg up to advance their careers.

The latest grants for the Mitre 10 Mega Future Champions Trust were presented at the Whanganui Secondary School Sports Awards at Cullinane College last week.

The Future Champions Trust aims to give Whanganui people and businesses an opportunity to support our talented sporting youth with a hand up to reach their full potential at international level.

The recipients were:


Liam Back (Cross Country): Selected for the New Zealand Secondary Schools team to compete at the world cross country championships in Paris in April.

Genna Maples (Athletics): Selected as part of the New Zealand Secondary Schools team to compete the Australian Athletics Championships next month.

Jordan Cohen (Hockey): Identified to attend the New Zealand under-18 squad selection training in New Plymouth.

Tara Raj (Golf): Competing in womens open and under-19 tournaments in New Zealand and Australia.

Fergus Smith (Golf): Selected to attend the University of Iowa in the United States to assist with and enhance his golfing career.

The athletes and their representatives were invited to attend the function, where the trust and its supporters acknowledged their achievements to date, and wished them well for their future endeavours.

The Future Champions Trust has been operating for five years and has granted $37,000 towards high achieving individual Whanganui youth.

Funding rounds are held twice annually at the end of March and September and this time around, the trust received generous donations from Mitre 10 Mega Whanganui and a variety of other businesses and individuals.

Trust chairwoman Philippa Baker-Hogan encouraged athletes interested in applying for the next round in March 2018 to visit the website to assess the criteria for the fund, and download an application form.

All levels of support are appreciated, and interested businesses are encouraged to contact the trust through its website, phone Philippa Baker-Hogan on 027 272 7953 or email enquiries@