Editorial: Good times at University Games!

Victoria Womens Lightweight Single - University Games
Gerard O'Flynn
Welcome again, to Rowing-World!

The principal rowing events this week have been the University Games on the Whanganui River and the Junior Trials along with the U-18 North island vs South Island match all being rowed at Lake Karapiro.

We feature a couple of reports from the University Games which underscore the unique character of the event – some great rowing competition, combined with the extra-curricular activities that are expected at any student event. While these cause a little brouhaha at the time, this soon forgotten, and the incidents become one of many that are related, and embellished, for years to come.

Over at Karapiro, life is a little more intense as the best of the school rowers are put through their paces. They will find tha the demands made of them are far more intense than they have ever experienced to date in their sporting lives. A glance through the results at Maadi, this year, reveals that rowing has an outstanding amount and depth of talent in 2006, and the challenge for the selectors will be who to take and where they should be entered.

To the rowers, the 2006 Trials might seem to the major goal in life, but in reality it is a small step towards a international rowing career. If you make the team – Great! Well done! But if you don’t, please realise that it is one small step in your rowing life, and that many NZ World Champions and Olympic medalists have never competed at Junior Worlds level.

As in most sports your 'losses' present your greatest learning opportunity. And it’s not how hard you fall, but how quickly that counts – in sport and in life.

Victoria Mens Tournament Four - University Games
Gerard O'Flynn

The University Games certainly show that there is a good competition beyond Maadi, plus what is on offer for international rowing competition across the Tasman. There’s no sweeter experience in sport than beating an Australian on their home patch!

We also feature a letter on the participation and direction of rowing in New Zealand. While this debate might be a little uncomfortable for some, Rowing has a huge asset in the data and detail available on its competitors, and is probably unique amongst NZ sports in this regard. If the sport is to continue to grow in both its participation base and achievement at world championship level this data must be used as the basis of a strategic planning process, and continue to be monitored on an annual basis – so that trends are objectively assessed and we aren’t working on a process of analysis by anecdote.

There’s a major Masters rowing regatta, in Hamilton this weekend – we hope to have coverage and photos available early next week.

Good Rowing!

Richard Gladwell
NZ Editor

PS We welcome your contributions, news and photos. Please email to nzeditor@rowing-world.com
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