Local Kids Waka Ama Success In London

Left to Right; Jake, Jessica, Jacob and Sam

Four local kids in the Helensville district attended the IVF Va’a World Elite and Club  Sprint Championships in Dorney Lake, London in August. Jake Cameron, Jessica  Cameron, Sam Lees and Jacob Lees all attended or are current students at Kaipara College  and had their passion for the sport ignited whilst attending Kaipara College under coach Israil Foreman.
Unfortunately, due to COVID restrictions and cancellation there hasn’t been a lot of great  news for kids on the sports front especially in Waka Ama or Va’a as it is known overseas.  But these 4 local kids decided to try and compete for a spot to make the NZ team in the  Elite Squad. This meant training a lot solo due to COVID restrictions up until the  qualifiers in April. Jake and Jessica qualified to represent NZ in the W1 category for under  19’s and all four kids were selected to represent NZ Club Nga Hoe Horo in the W6 category.
Training through winter was hard work with training a lot out on the Kaipara River and travelling to training camps etc. all over the North Island. The hard work paid off with a  large haul of medals. Jake earned 1 gold, 2 silver and 2 bronze. Jessica earned 2 silver and 1 bronze. Sam earned 1 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze.
Jacob earned 1 silver and 2 bronze.
The experience, friendships and racing at the event were a chance of a lifetime and has encouraged them to pursue the sport they love and work towards the next Long Distance  Worlds event in Samoa in 2023 and the next Sprint event in Hawaii in 2024.
Jake, Jessica, Sam and Jacob would like to thank River Valley Meats and everyone that supported the sold-out meat raffle they ran to help with costs to get to London. They  would also like to acknowledge the support of their club Tu Tangi Ora Waka Ama Club and Parkview Developments for their support and funding towards the trip. Lastly Jake and Jessica would like to thank the Helensville Lions for their generous support in helping with the expenses in getting them to London.

The boys under full power

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