Waikato rowers are world champions

1 September 2014

Caleb Shepherd

Calling a great race:  World champion coxswain Caleb Shepherd.

With the annual Gallagher Great Race fast approaching, Waikato University rowing crews will be feeling confident knowing new world champions are going to be in their boats on race day, Sunday 14 September.

Zoe Stevenson, a Sir Edmund Hillary Scholar studying science at Waikato, teamed up with Fiona Bourke to win gold in the double sculls at the world championships in Amsterdam. The pair, out in lane six, pulled off a spectacular second half surge to win the race in six minutes 38.05 seconds – the second fastest time in the world.

Zoe will be in the Waikato women’s eight on race day when the crew takes on Washington and Melbourne university crews for the Bryan Gould Cup.

New Zealand men’s pair world champions Hamish Bond and Eric Murray won a second gold at this year’s champs – in the coxed pair. Their cox was Caleb Shepherd who’s studying for a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Writing Studies at Waikato. He’s also a Hillary Scholar.

The former Hamilton Boys’ High student will be coxing the Waikato men’s crew in the great race against rowers from Harvard and Melbourne, defending the Harry Mahon Trophy.

Alumna best in the world

Meanwhile, Waikato University alumna Emma Twigg capped off her perfect season by winning the women’s single sculls world title in Amsterdam. Emma, who graduated from Waikato with a Bachelor of Communication Studies, is now taking a break from rowing to study in Europe.

She’s one of 30 people worldwide to have been accepted on FIFA’s Masters in Sports Management, selected from 300 applicants. The degree involves study at three universities – eight weeks each at De Montfort University (UK) to study humanities of sport, the University of Bocconi in Milan for marketing management and finance and at the University of Neuchâtel in Switzerland where she’ll be studying law.

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