Home > News > Archive > 29th November 2005

Waipa champions honoured

Courtesy of Te Awamutu Courier
Peter Latham
WAIPA Sportsperson of the Year Peter Latham. 333051AD

By Cathy Asplin

Being the first New Zealander to win a medal at a senior road cycling world championship sealed the title of Waipa Sportsperson of the Year for Peter Latham.

The 21-year-old Te Awamutu Sports cyclist has competed in numerous international events during 2005, including the world track champs in Los Angeles, as well as events in France and Spain. He was the first ranked New Zealander in the Oceania Tour, won a stage in the Tour of Southland and picked up three first placings in the Tour of Wellington Peter was Waipa Junior Sportsperson of the Year in 2004, as well as being Waikato Junior Sportsperson for 2003-2004.

He was pleased to be home again for a few weeks, which allowed him to attend the Waipa District Sports Awards.

“It’s been great to be back in Te Awamutu after being away for seven months - I was hanging out to get home again. It gives me some down time and a chance to catch up with family and friends. The awards evening was also a great opportunity to catch up with people and thank my supporters.”

The timing of the event was ideal for Peter, as he headed south the following day, competing in the Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge on Saturday (which he won in record time, see more page 16). His next major assignments are the Oceania Games in Wanganui this week and the World Cup in Manchester. He will then return home for Christmas before focusing on the Commonwealth Games.

“We got fourth in the team pursuit at the world track champs - we were just a few seconds off the pace - so our goal is to win at the Commonwealth Games.”

In essence there were few surprises at the well organised Waipa Networks District Sports Awards evening staged in the new St Peter’s sports centre, as most categories had stand out achievers.

Rowers Georgina and Caroline Evers-Swindell maintained their stranglehold on the Team of the Year title, which they have now won for three years. The twins were gold medalists at the World Champs in Japan and were recently awarded the International Rowing Federation Women’s Crew of the Year.

Not surprisingly their coach Richard Tonks, who was named 2005 FISA World Coach of the Year, picked up the Waipa Coach of the Year title as well.