Second world champs title in a row for skater

00:00, Sep 10 2012

Palmerston North speed skater Peter Michael has become a world champion for the second year in a row, winning the 15-kilometre elimination event at the world championships in Italy yesterday.

Michael was third going into the final lap before he put on a burst of speed at the end to pass Italian Fabio Francolini and Belgian Bart Swings for the win.

It was Michael's second world championship win in a row after he won gold in Korea last year.

■ Another major New Zealand rally is to make an overnight stopover in Feilding.

It is the seven-day Silver Fern Rally which will stop in Feilding in November as well as at Rotorua, Gisborne, Napier, Ohakune and Taupo and finishes at Hamilton. The rally, organised by the Marathon Rally Car Club in Hamilton, covers more than 1000km of high-speed stages and tries to bring back the days of old when rallying was an adventure.

At Feilding there will be a zone for drivers and spectators to mingle, as well as commentary and driver interviews.


The Targa Rally, over 750km of tarmac stages, will be overnight in Palmerston North late next month.

■ A familiar face at Whangarei during the Manawatu Turbos' win over Northland was former Arena Manawatu manager of four years, John Lynch. Turns out he is the venues and events manager for Whangarei, with the stadium at Okara Park, rebuilt for the Rugby World Cup, his responsibility. Before that he was at Mt Smart Stadium in Auckland. The Whangarei stadium had everything except a big screen, and ironically, Lynch procured the screen from Italy which is still in use in Palmerston North.

■ The feat of Levin and Manawatu-Wanganui golfer Tyler Hodge is phenomenal.

No golfer wins six of his last seven tournaments, but 17-year-old Hodge has done it after he picked up the New Zealand boys' amateur title on the Waipu links south of Whangarei last week. He became the first New Zealander to win the New Zealand and Australian titles in the same year. Saali Herewini came the closest when he won the 1992 Australian junior after winning the 1991 New Zealand junior title.

■ A late flight from Auckland to Palmerston North on Sunday, September 2, was not the place to be amidst men and women's hockey players who should have known better.

Reports reach us that they were unruly, yelling up and down the plane and so loud no-one could hear the announcements. It was "an hour of pandemonium" said one passenger who figured too many of them had had too much to drink. She was surprised their team managers didn't quell their charges for the sake of the other fare-paying passengers.

■ Black Sticks striker Nick Wilson hasn't allowed himself much of a break as the Palmerston North lad is now back in the Netherlands playing for this Rotterdam club.

The National Hockey League finished last weekend and he was straight on a plane to the Netherlands.

It's been a busy year for Wilson, considering he returned from the London Olympics last month and was straight back on the hockey turf, suiting up for the Central Mavericks in the NHL only a couple of days after he got home from the Olympics campaign.

Manawatu Standard