In the absence of the 2020 Maadi Cup, the North Island Secondary School Champs became the default Maadi and today I will finish reflecting back on the outstanding performances of Whanganui Collegiate School.
WCS took 58 rowers/coxswains to this huge regatta where 99 schools and 1855 rowers competed and made its way to 23 finals.
Before I move on to the junior and novice results, a few more senior results of note included the girls under-18 double of Charlotte McKinlay and Phoebe Collier finished fourth less than .5 seconds behind bronze, a stellar effort as Collier was quite sick.
Later in the regatta they joined Holly Lennox, Alyana du Fresne, Jaime Maybery, Margy Hazelhurst, Ngatatau Tumango, Ruby Hawley and Bella Stevenson-Watt (cox) for a strong fourth in the girls' under-18 eight.
The No 2 girls under-18 coxed quad of novices Bridgitte O'Leary, Charlotte Gillespie, as well as Anna Bullock, Kaia Potaka-Osborne and Harriet Yorsten (cox) were eighth behind the No 1 crew in third.
Going on to the novices and junior performances at North Islands, some double medallists shone through. The girls' under-15 coxed four of Gretel Murphy, Emily McKinlay, Annabelle Symes, Samantha Hayes and Bridget Jones-Long (cox) took silver behind a strong Takapuna Grammar crew.
Murphy, Emily McKinlay and Bridget Jones-Long (c), then joined Haana Kilmister, Tessa Norman in a fight against Epsom Girls' Grammar to claim another terrific silver with the win going to Waikato Diocesan School.
The other double medal act was the girls' under-18 novice double of Bridgitte O'Leary and Charlotte Gillespie in an epic race for silver just over 1 second behind an Auckland Dio.
They then joined forces in the girls' under-18 novice coxed quadruple scull with Pip Bullock, Poppy Hobbs and B Stevenson-Watt (c) for a well fought bronze medal.
A few other performances of note include the girls' under-15 and 16 coxed eights which both recorded seventh in A finals. The under-15 crew was Pip Bullock, Millicent Murphy, Charlotte Giblin, Mary O'Leary, P Hobbs, Emma Rendle, Paige Stead, Rachel Roberts and Te Amo Crow (c).
The under-16 crew was Gretel Murphy, Hanna Kilmister, Emily McKinlay, Tessa Norman, Brooke Lanauze, Annabel Symes, Phoebe Bell, Samantha Hayes and Bridget Jones-Long (c).
The girls' under-15 coxed four of Giblin, Rendle, Stead, Roberts and Juliet Robb (cox) also placed eighth in the A final.
Although Collegiate is re-building its junior boys' programme, it was really promising to see the boys' under-16 coxed four of Loki Hopkinson, Joshua Brunger, Matthew Poulton, George Nilsson and Jack Walker (cox) go from last in their heat, albeit quite a good time, to clearly win the B final and bodes well for next season.
Josh Brunger, little brother to NZ junior athlete Tayla Brunger, seems pretty keen as he smashed out two ergs in the Eric Murray Challenge for a boys' under-16 fifth place.
With coaches Rex Jones, Rick Grobecker, Sam Scott, Loftus Stanford, Tom Monaghan and Kit Croxford (seniors with Tyler Scott) all involved and Collegiate achieving way more medals for the size of its school (460) than all the other notable North Island big rowing schools, they must take great pride from their efforts this season, despite not being able to finish the job at the cancelled Maadi Cup.