Hawke’s Bay’s latest world champ triumphs in Copenhagen – NZ Herald

Hawke’s Bay’s latest world champ triumphs in Copenhagen – NZ Herald

She was the girl from Hawke’s Bay who started kayaking as bit of cross-training for canoe polo.

On Monday, Aimee Fisher became a world champion kayaker, and while she may have having moved to Auckland she hasn’t forgotten her home club, and still races in its name.

Aimee Fisher is still not at her peak but she's in the best shape of her life. Photo / AP
Aimee Fisher is still not at her peak but she’s in the best shape of her life. Photo / AP

The tinge of black-and-white pride was palpable on Monday as Hawke’s Bay Kayak Racing Club chairman Lionel da Silva celebrated the 26-year-old winning the women’s K1 500 World canoe sprint title in Copenhagen, Denmark, on Sunday.

She already had made a name for herself, with a string of performances which have made her the three-times winner of the Supreme Award at the Hawke’s Bay Sports Awards. But this was her best, says da Silva, reliving the commentary having watched the live-stream from home in the Bay.

“The girl did so well. She’s still not at her peak but she’s in the best shape of her life,” he said, marvelling at how Fisher, having topped what she calls the hardest year of her life, bounced back from the trauma which saw her bypassing the Tokyo Olympics to beat both the silver and bronze medallists from the equivalent event in Japan less than two months ago.

Aimee Fisher won gold ahead of Tamara Csipese of Hungary (left) and Emma Aastrand Jorgensen of Denmark. Photo / AP
Aimee Fisher won gold ahead of Tamara Csipese of Hungary (left) and Emma Aastrand Jorgensen of Denmark. Photo / AP

She got away well, as da Silva explains, edging ahead after about 100 metres and ultimately surging ahead to beat Tamara Csipes, of Hungary, and host-country hope Emma Jorgensen.

Born in Rotorua and raised in Hastings, where she went to Karamu High School, Fisher’s previous best success was with Jaimee Lovett, Caitlin Ryan and Kayla Imrie in winning a K4 5000m World Cup final in 2015.

Two years later she won the Under-23s K1 200m and 500m at the World Championships in 2017, when she was also named Combined Canoe Sprint Athlete of the Year with Lisa Carrington, the two having won a World Cup K2 500m final in Hungary.

Having made herself unavailable for this year’s Olympics, she won the K1 500 at the New Zealand championships in May to become eligible for the World Championships, with the New Zealand Olympic athletes not being considered.

She told championships media outlet Planet Canoe after her win that it wasn’t to “make a statement”, but was “special” for everyone back home – to where she will now fly and spend a fortnight in quarantine before deciding on her future plans.

This content was originally published here.

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