Imrie's class shines through

Paekakariki paddler Kayla Imrie was an impressive winner of the women's ski race at the Whangamata Classic surf lifesaving carnival on Saturday.

Imrie dominated a classy field and was too strong for another cross-over kayaker, Fitzroy's Rebecca Cole, with Piha's Brita Camplin third.

Australian ironman Jackson Maynard added some international class to the carnival, though the 22-year-old didn't have things all his own way.

Maynard, who finished third in the Australian ironman championships earlier this year, headed across the ditch to compete at Whangamata and in next weekend's inaugural Mount Monster long-distance event.

He showed his all-round skills by winning the open men's surf race at the annual Coromandel carnival and was third in both the ski race and board race finals amid one-metre surf and blazing sunshine.

But he was shut out of the medals in the ironman, after a remarkable surge from Mt Maunganui's Andrew Newton, who outsprinted Whangamata's Bjorn Battaerd after a phenomenal final board leg.

Newton, 27, has a rich pedigree on the board and ski and has steadily built on his swimming in recent years.

He also took advantage of a friendly sandbank in the opening swim leg yesterday, allowing him to keep pace with the early leaders, though he still had plenty of work to do over the ski and board legs.

"I saw a wave coming as I came around the cans on the board and knew I had to pull down it," Newton said. "When we all hit the beach together, it was all about who still had the legs - I'm pretty happy with that finish."

The Dominion Post