Canoe Racing New Zealand now calls Waipa home

01 March 2018

Canoe Racing New Zealand and the Cambridge Yacht Club now have a place they can call home on the shores of Lake Karapiro in the Waikato.

The $2.3 million facility houses Canoe Racing New Zealand's high-performance training centre as well as the long-standing Cambridge Yacht Club.

The training centre will allow New Zealand's elite and emerging paddlers access to the range of high- performance services, with Rowing NZ already at Karapiro while Cycling NZ and Tri NZ were based at the nearby Avantidrome in Cambridge. The administrative side of the sport will operate from the Avantidrome, but the centre will contain storage for canoes along with a meeting room for coaches and a warm-up room.

The facility opened on February 23 by Waipa Mayor Jim Mylchreest and the Minister for Community and Voluntary Sector, Peeni Henare. Mylchreest called the centre "innovative".

"Of course we're thrilled to welcome Canoe Racing New Zealand's elite athletes and high-performance programme to Waipa.

"But we're just as pleased to cater for community-based activities – that's what Waipa is about.

"Cambridge Yacht Club members gave up their dedicated building and lease they have held since the 1940s to create a better facility that will serve their club and the broader community well.

"With a brand new room, pontoon, better storage and access to the water, they've done well. But they've also allowed Canoe Racing New Zealand to move down from Auckland to join Waipa's high-performance hub."

Henare was pleased to see sport build on the success of rowing and cycling.

Canoe Racing New Zealand chief executive Mark Weatherall said Lake Karapiro was an "ideal place" for elite athletes to train all year round, on "great water" and in a world-class environment.

"We only have to look at what Rowing New Zealand has achieved being based there. We are excited to be based in Waipa. Canoe racing is in a positive space and it's inspiring as we look towards the Olympics in Tokyo," Weatherall said.

The $2.3m building was jointly funded by Sport New Zealand, Canoe Racing New Zealand, Waipa District Council, the Brian Perry Charitable Trust, Frances Skeet Charitable Trust, Trillian Trust and Trust Waikato plus corporate supporters Deloitte and Fuji Xerox.

- Mike Bain, Stuff

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