A quintet of South Canterbury crews wasted little time in laying down the challenge to the other schools on the opening day of the Maadi Cup yesterday.
The biggest National Secondary School Rowing Championships yet, with more than 2100 rowers, saw calm conditions for the start of the week-long regatta on Lake Ruataniwha, near Twizel.
The Craighead under-15 coxed quad of Jessica Martin, Olivia Hughes, Maddi Palmer, Sarah Templeton and cox Keren Wright clocked the fastest time in their three heats.
The crew finished in 7min 52.67sec to go straight to the semifinals. Craighead's under-18 pair of Renee Olley and Alice Murdoch also won their heat on opening day.
Their time of 7:49.47 put them under a second behind the other two heat winners Christchurch Girls' High School and Waikato Diocesan.
All three crews made it straight to the A final.
Timaru Boys' High School's James Walker also won his under-18 single sculls heat.
His time of 8:50.23 was the third fastest across the heats and saw him comfortably qualify for the quarterfinals.
The Timaru Girls' High School under-16 coxed quad of Tarina Crampton, Tayla Brown, Michaela Watt, Madison Gillespie and Brooke Clemett won their heat in 8:29.05 to make the quarterfinals with ease.
Craighead's under-15 coxless pair of Martin and Hughes also won their heat in 9:16.32 which was second fastest across the seven heats as they approach the quarterfinals.
The Craighead under-18 novice double of Eve Sutherland and Emily O'Reilly made it through to the quarterfinals after finishing second in their heat.
The other Craighead crews face repechages.
Roncalli College's Bridget Cody did enough to make the quarterfinals of the girls' under-16 single by finishing third in her heat, with the top four progressing through.
The boys' under-15 double of Liam McDonald and Jack Gibbs achieved the same feat with a third in their race.
Johnny Rush and Tim Coughlan made the quarterfinals of the under-17 boys' double with second in their heat.
The girls' under-18 novice double of Kim Geels and Anna Gregan finished fourth, while the girls' under-16 coxed quad of Siobhan Connolly, Cody, Lilly Simpson, Abby McIlroy and cox Olivia Cockroft progressed to the quarterfinals finishing second in their heat.
Repechages loom for most of the others.
Besides Walker, TBHS's best effort came in the under-18 novice double where Taylor Worthington-Thin and Cameron Hayes finished second but still face a repechage.
The under-15 double of Brad Cvitanich and Finlay Joyce finished third to make the quarterfinals.
The TGHS under-18 double of Sarah Creed and Jodie Sole made the quarterfinals after finishing second.
So did the under-15 double of Lilly Spittal and Emma Sorenson when third in their heat.
Heats and repechages make up the events on day two today.
- South Canterbury