Oceania Gold

Poverty Bay Kayak Club trio Alex Bermingham, Sam Ferkins and Alicia Hoskin, who were part of a 16-strong New Zealand team at the champs. All three enjoyed medal success. Picture by Paul Rickard
Alicia Hoskin, with her hand bandaged after aggravating a finger injury, powers through the water during the Oceania sprint kayaking championships in Sydney. Hoskin did the under-18 women’s K1 double, winning the 200 and 500 metres finals. Picture by Alison Pritchard

GISBORNE teenager Alicia Hoskin overcame injury to dominate her age group at the Oceania sprint kayaking Grand Prix 2 championships in Sydney over the weekend.

The Poverty Bay Kayak Club member won gold in the under-18 women’s K1 200 and 500 metres, and was a member of the victorious K4 500 crew.

Hoskin was part of a 16-strong New Zealand team who included fellow Poverty Bay club members Sam Ferkins and Alex Bermingham, both of whom also enjoyed medal success.

Hoskin’s preparation was nearly derailed when she aggravated a finger injury loading kayaks two days before the champs held at the Sydney International Regatta Centre.

“I picked up the injury last year. Initially it was thought to be a finger tendon pulley injury,” said Hoskin,who slept for 12 hours after arriving home last night.

“I’m still buzzing about my performances but was definitely tired. I didn’t get back to Gisborne until around 8.45, then had a quick tea with my grandparents (John and Lyn Hawkesworth) before going to bed. Now I’ve got to get ready to go to Auckland University at the weekend to start a three-year course in sports and exercise.”

Hoskin aggravated the injury the day before her first race — the K1 200m.

“We were practising gate starts, which we don’t have in New Zealand, and I felt the ring finger on my right-hand pulling.

“Any pressure on it was super sore and it made me more nervous than I was before the races. But my coach (Gergely Gyertyanos) was really good. He got me to focus on what I could do and try to forget the injury.”

Easier said than done

“The focus was on my first stroke and getting off to a good start but by the end of each race the finger was throbbing.

‘We isolated the finger, which made it awkward to hold the paddle, but I got a personal best time for the K1 200m and that gave me a lot of confidence.”

After winning the K1 500m, Hoskin woke the following morning with a purple and painful finger.

“I kept the strapping on for the whole day and took some tablets. I had a good race but it wasn’t a PB.”

Hoskin’s instructions from her coach and team management were to treat her heats as A finals — to post as fast a qualifying time as possible and proceed directly to the final, avoiding having to advance through semifinals.

She did just that, taking full advantage of the near-perfect racing conditions.

Her 200m heat was won in a blistering 43.73 seconds — 3secs clear of the field.

The following day she won the final in an even faster 43.3, with teammate Pieta Luthi claiming silver.

The 500m was a repeat of the game plan. Hoskin won her heat in 1min 58.1sec, over 6secs clear of the next fastest qualifier.

The final, the following day, was a procession with the rest of the field fighting for minor placings.

Hoskin won in 2.01 and was 1.4secs ahead of the runner-up.

Ferkins went into his first Oceania champs and first regatta as part of a Kiwi team as an unknown quantity.

He comfortably progressed to the final in his preferred u18 men’s K1 1000m by winning his heat in 3.50.1 — 7secs ahead of Australian Jesse Kneebone-Ellis.

He continued that vein of form in the final to win by 3.5secs in 3.48.2.

Ferkins was also in the crew who won the U18 K4 title in an impressive 1.29.07.

He made the A final of the K1 200 by winning his heat in 39.63, but with a heavy workload, he was unable to repeat his 1000m performance and placed ninth in 40.89. He and Liam Lace were fifth in the K2 500m.

Busy regatta

Bermingham also had a busy regatta.

She combined with Wellington’s Brooklyn Saunders to win bronze in the u18 K2 500m in 1:55.96 and silver in the K2 200m.

The pair joined Hoskin and Lucy Matehaere to win gold in the U18 K4 500.

Bermingham also progressed through heats, semis and into the final of the K1 500m, finishing seventh.

Hoskin and Bermingham were in two K4 combinations who raced in the open women’s K4 500m — a selection trial for the Australian open kayakers.

New Zealand’s team management was keen to test new combinations and, with organisers’ approval, they were entered against many of Australia’s Olympians.

Hoskin, Luthi, Hannah Baker and Lucy Matehaere were fourth in 1:42.2.

Bermingham, Saunders, Tilly Pritchard and Tiana Williamson were fifth.

These performances showed that the New Zealand junior team have options available when it comes to their K4 combination for the junior world champs in Bulgaria later in the year.

The Oceania champs featured 148 athletes in 89 events across the Olympic and Paralympic sprint classes, and open, u18 and u16 age groups.

As well as Australian and New Zealand competitors, there were entries from France, South Africa, Denmark, Great Britain and Tahiti.

The Poverty Bay trio’s focus shifts to the New Zealand championships from February 23 to 25 at Lake Karapiro, where they will look to continue their strong form and cement selection for the junior worlds in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

GISBORNE teenager Alicia Hoskin overcame injury to dominate her age group at the Oceania sprint kayaking Grand Prix 2 championships in Sydney over the weekend.

The Poverty Bay Kayak Club member won gold in the under-18 women’s K1 200 and 500 metres, and was a member of the victorious K4 500 crew.

Hoskin was part of a 16-strong New Zealand team who included fellow Poverty Bay club members Sam Ferkins and Alex Bermingham, both of whom also enjoyed medal success.

Hoskin’s preparation was nearly derailed when she aggravated a finger injury loading kayaks two days before the champs held at the Sydney International Regatta Centre.

“I picked up the injury last year. Initially it was thought to be a finger tendon pulley injury,” said Hoskin,who slept for 12 hours after arriving home last night.

“I’m still buzzing about my performances but was definitely tired. I didn’t get back to Gisborne until around 8.45, then had a quick tea with my grandparents (John and Lyn Hawkesworth) before going to bed. Now I’ve got to get ready to go to Auckland University at the weekend to start a three-year course in sports and exercise.”

Hoskin aggravated the injury the day before her first race — the K1 200m.

“We were practising gate starts, which we don’t have in New Zealand, and I felt the ring finger on my right-hand pulling.

“Any pressure on it was super sore and it made me more nervous than I was before the races. But my coach (Gergely Gyertyanos) was really good. He got me to focus on what I could do and try to forget the injury.”

Easier said than done

“The focus was on my first stroke and getting off to a good start but by the end of each race the finger was throbbing.

‘We isolated the finger, which made it awkward to hold the paddle, but I got a personal best time for the K1 200m and that gave me a lot of confidence.”

After winning the K1 500m, Hoskin woke the following morning with a purple and painful finger.

“I kept the strapping on for the whole day and took some tablets. I had a good race but it wasn’t a PB.”

Hoskin’s instructions from her coach and team management were to treat her heats as A finals — to post as fast a qualifying time as possible and proceed directly to the final, avoiding having to advance through semifinals.

She did just that, taking full advantage of the near-perfect racing conditions.

Her 200m heat was won in a blistering 43.73 seconds — 3secs clear of the field.

The following day she won the final in an even faster 43.3, with teammate Pieta Luthi claiming silver.

The 500m was a repeat of the game plan. Hoskin won her heat in 1min 58.1sec, over 6secs clear of the next fastest qualifier.

The final, the following day, was a procession with the rest of the field fighting for minor placings.

Hoskin won in 2.01 and was 1.4secs ahead of the runner-up.

Ferkins went into his first Oceania champs and first regatta as part of a Kiwi team as an unknown quantity.

He comfortably progressed to the final in his preferred u18 men’s K1 1000m by winning his heat in 3.50.1 — 7secs ahead of Australian Jesse Kneebone-Ellis.

He continued that vein of form in the final to win by 3.5secs in 3.48.2.

Ferkins was also in the crew who won the U18 K4 title in an impressive 1.29.07.

He made the A final of the K1 200 by winning his heat in 39.63, but with a heavy workload, he was unable to repeat his 1000m performance and placed ninth in 40.89. He and Liam Lace were fifth in the K2 500m.

Busy regatta

Bermingham also had a busy regatta.

She combined with Wellington’s Brooklyn Saunders to win bronze in the u18 K2 500m in 1:55.96 and silver in the K2 200m.

The pair joined Hoskin and Lucy Matehaere to win gold in the U18 K4 500.

Bermingham also progressed through heats, semis and into the final of the K1 500m, finishing seventh.

Hoskin and Bermingham were in two K4 combinations who raced in the open women’s K4 500m — a selection trial for the Australian open kayakers.

New Zealand’s team management was keen to test new combinations and, with organisers’ approval, they were entered against many of Australia’s Olympians.

Hoskin, Luthi, Hannah Baker and Lucy Matehaere were fourth in 1:42.2.

Bermingham, Saunders, Tilly Pritchard and Tiana Williamson were fifth.

These performances showed that the New Zealand junior team have options available when it comes to their K4 combination for the junior world champs in Bulgaria later in the year.

The Oceania champs featured 148 athletes in 89 events across the Olympic and Paralympic sprint classes, and open, u18 and u16 age groups.

As well as Australian and New Zealand competitors, there were entries from France, South Africa, Denmark, Great Britain and Tahiti.

The Poverty Bay trio’s focus shifts to the New Zealand championships from February 23 to 25 at Lake Karapiro, where they will look to continue their strong form and cement selection for the junior worlds in Plovdiv, Bulgaria.

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