While there is no certainty of a NZ Junior team leaving these shores in August, four Whanganui Collegiate rowers at least have the encouragement of knowing they are in the frame after a "longlisted" group was announced on Friday.

Like all sports in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, rowing activities were stopped on March 20 as Rowing NZ announced the postponement of the 2020 Junior Trials.

In a press release, the national body said they will take guidance from World Rowing (FISA) over whether the 2020 World Rowing Junior Championships will still take place as currently scheduled from August 16–21 in Bled, Slovenia.

"At this stage, Rowing NZ intend to run Junior trials later in the year, but will monitor the Covid-19 situation in Europe and New Zealand before a final decision is made."

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On Friday, Rowing NZ named 35 young men and 32 young women as their longlisted athletics for a possible trial in 2020.

This includes Collegiate's two Under 18 doubles crews - the North Island Secondary School gold medal-winning Leo Hanna and Blake Hogan, along with the girls team of Phoebe Collier and Charlotte McKinlay.

Collier and McKinlay won bronze at the NISS championships as part of the Under 18 coxed quad sculls crew with Jaime Maybery, Margy Hazelhurst and cox Bella Stevenson-Watt.

Fellow Whanganui Collegiate rowers Phoebe Collier and Charlotte McKinlay are also on the list.
Fellow Whanganui Collegiate rowers Phoebe Collier and Charlotte McKinlay are also on the list.

Hogan added an Under 18 singles sculls bronze to his gold with Hanna on Lake Karapiro.

Rowing NZ had to make a long list due to the cancellation of the 2020 Aon Maadi Cup, from which a final list of names getting to trial for the national squad would have been released.

"A final Junior trialist list will be announced at a later date if it is determined a Junior team should assemble for a training campaign, with a view to compete at the 2020 World Rowing Junior Championships.

"Longlisted athletes named...may be required to complete further testing in their home regions.

"Any requirements of this nature will be communicated via email.

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"Rowing NZ remain supportive of the government's Covid-19 containment initiatives, and ensuring that the health and well-being of athletes, coaches and staff remains our top priority."

Knowing Hogan, Hanna, McKinlay and Collier have all made at least an initial cut will be a source of pride for Collegiate head coach Tyler Scott, with all four of his nominated rowers being accepted.

In addition, Hogan's mother and former world champion Philippa Baker-Hogan has a rower she coaches named on the long list under the Clifton Rowing Club banner, which is also part of the Whanganui Rowing Association.

Tori Cox, from New Plymouth Girls High, claimed silver in the girls Under 18 single scull at the NISS championships, as well silver medals in both the women's Under 19 double scull and the women's Senior quadruple scull at the 2020 Rocket Foods NZ Rowing Championships.

New Plymouth's Tori Cox, who is coached by Whanganui's Philippa Baker-Hogan.
New Plymouth's Tori Cox, who is coached by Whanganui's Philippa Baker-Hogan.