Rower Storm Uru facing his big career decision
World-class rower Storm Uru faces what he says is the most difficult decision he has had to make.
The Southlander is pondering whether to have a crack at pushing on to the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro or call time on his rowing career and enter traditional employment.
Uru rubber-stamped his name as one of Southland's greatest sportsmen on Monday morning (NZ time) when he was part of the Oxford University crew which won The Boat Race.
The event is a rowing showdown between the Oxford University and Cambridge University and Monday's race was the 160th to be held.
The win goes alongside the bronze medal Uru picked up at the 2012 London Olympics as part of the New Zealand lightweight double.
Uru said being part of such a special event has refuelled his passion for rowing after being away from the New Zealand programme for a couple of years.
It also has him pondering whether to have a shot at his third successive Olympics.
"Coming off a win like that it creates motivation and I'm really enjoying my rowing at the moment. But on the other hand I've got to look to my future and at the moment it could be a good time to enter into the work force, maybe over here or somewhere else. It's a good place to be in, but a very tough decision to make.
"The major thing about rowing at the Olympics is the level and quality and if I was going to go back and have a shot at it I would definitely want to be going for Olympic gold," Uru said.
"So I'd need to be back into training within the next month. I couldn't have too much time off so if it was to become a reality I would have to make that decision soon."
Uru will return to Invercargill next week where he will take time out with his parents Robbie and Bill to talk about the decision before he heads to Taupo for the wedding of fellow Southland rower and 2012 Olympic gold medallist, Nathan Cohen.
"Hopefully back home in Invercargill chatting with mum and dad and chatting with mates up in Taupo I think I'll have a clear idea then what I'm going to do."
Whatever call Uru makes, the experience of rowing in such a prestigious event like The Boat Race is something he will recall fondly.
He confessed he wasn't aware just how much the race meant for Oxford and Cambridge until he was emersed in it and was part of the eight months of preparation. He said that preparation wasn't too far off what he was used to with the New Zealand rowing programme.
"Obviously combining that with school work was pretty tough, particularly at Oxford," he said.
"The level required here is very high. I've got very intelligent class mates.
"Doing the actually race itself was so much fun.
"When you get down to the start line it's pretty hard to be prepared for that many people, they are vocal supporters as well. It's on par with the Olympics as far as the focus it gets."