New Zealand V1 World Distance Paddler Profiles - Laurie (Skin) Atkins

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Kia ora e te whānau, it's been awhile since our last profile but we would like to introduce Laurie (Skin) Atkins. Skin will be representing Aotearoa in the V1 Master 60 Mens division and racing in the Aotearoa Master 60 Mens crew with his Taniwah team mates. As a frequent competitor at our National and Regional events - Skin is a well known name around the rohe! Hailing from the winterless North, Skin is an avid V1 paddler and we are looking forward to supporting him on the world stage in a few months time!



V1 Master 60 Men


Name Laurie (Skin) Atkins

Age: 68

Club: Tapara L Waka Trust

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Where did you grow up? Grew up on a farm in Tomarata 

Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat? Any seat in the waka as I just love to be in paddling. My preference is V1 paddling

What is your favourite long distance race in the world and why? Favourite long distance race is Queen Liliuokalani because of the size and I won with a Hawaiian crew and then went on to win the singles 

What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Tip is to stay focused and don't flip out

If you could meet one person in the world (alive or deceased), who would it be? To have met Bruce Lee would have been the ultimate as I have 'modelled' myself around him

Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign? Dave DeLa Rue got me started and use to be my manager. When first asked to paddle I was a bit hesitant, knowing that if I liked it, I would give my all. After my first paddle I was truely hooked and have hardly missed a training since. The last few years I've trained on my own 'year round' and still get a buzz when I'm heading off. I've got to the top but still thrive to be better 



V1 Master 50 Women






Yvonne Rogers

Age: 52

Club: Ruamata

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Where did you grow up? South Auckland, Papakura

How did you get into paddling and how long have you been paddling for? I was introduced to Waka Ama in Whakatane, I paddled in a Corporate event got hooked and I haven’t stopped paddling.  That was way back in 2003.

Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat? I sit anywhere except the steering seat.  I have lots of experience in seat 1 and 2, I really like 3 for the calling and motivating the team. Seat 5 is always fun even more fun when there is surf to catch.

What is your favourite long distance race in the world and why? I have been very fortunate to do some amazing races with even more amazing women.  My favourite would have to be Nga Wahine o Ke Kai – Molokai to Oahu, because it is mentally and physically challenges you and the team.

What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Being prepared, long distance is not everyone’s cuppa.  Getting out there and do the kilometres, enjoy the time on the water.  It is always rewarding after a good long hard paddle whether, you are in your single or with your mates.

If you could meet one person in the world (alive or deceased), who would it be? My Great Great Great grand father Kamariera Te Hau Takiri  Wharepapa, he had an extraordinary life,  sailing to England and returning to Mangakahia with Elizabeth Ann Reid my Great Great Great Grandmother.

Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign? I would like to thank my husband Wayne and daughter Te Pumanawa o toku ate for giving me the freedom to train, compete in races throughout Aotearoa, abroad and always there supporting me.  I am forever grateful for all their love and support. 

 

 

 



V1 Master 50 Men





Greg (Aussie) Jones


Age: 50


Club: Akarana/Pineula

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Where did you grow up? Tasmania Australia, Switched allegiance to NZ in 2003  


How did you get into paddling and how long have you been paddling for? Introduced via friends  in 1992


Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat? All seats and I like versatility of being able to sit in all seats  


What is your favorite long distance race in the world and why? I was lucky enough to paddle Pailolo in 2018 and have put on the bucket list to do the same course Maui to Molokai (M2M) on an OC1


What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Make sure you have a good hydration system and prepare for the distance


If you could meet one person in the world (alive or deceased), who would it be? Everyone I want to meet is already in my life, so I’d say one of my relatives I’m a direct descendant of, from at least 150 -200 years ago


Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign? My partner and everyone I’ve ever paddled with and against and especially my teammates/squad from Pineula






V1 Junior 19 Men

Kacey Ngataki

Age: 17

Club: Manukau Outrigger Canoe Club

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Where did you grow up? South Auckland  

how long have you been paddling for? 8 years

How did you get into paddling? Growing up I spent a lot of time on the water surfing, swimming and doing SUP, I Used to watch my Grandma and Parents race so it eventually stuck.

Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat?  Usually 1, 2 and 5 because im a bit small for 3 and 4

What is your favourite long distance race in the world and why? Friday Aito with the Vakamanu boys

What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Enjoy the ride 

If you could meet one person in the world (alive or deceased), who would it be? ‘’Steevy Boy’’

Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign? Thank you to all the people who have contributed to my paddling career big or small over the past 8 years, first and foremost my Mum and Dad who have supported me from the very beginning and too my whanau and friends. Also a huge thank you to my coaches/idols Kimi, Mark, Brad and the entire Vakamanu squad. 





V1 Master 60 Women

Liz Tane 

Age: 62

Club: Taniwha /TMOCC

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Where did you grow up? Mangere Auckland  

How did you get into paddling and how long have you been paddling for? My husband introduced me to paddling 18 years ago.

Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat? I sit anywhere in the wakaa that works for the team…I do not have a specific seat that I like. I was lucky to have a coach that made us sit in all 6 seats to gain experience.

What is your favourite long distance race in the world and why? The Na Wahine O Ke Kai crossing between Molokai and Oahu. I was privileged to race in 2014 with a mixture of SMW and MW paddlers from Australia, Tahiti, California and New Zealand. The race was such a buzz mentally and physically. 

What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Put in the training:  learn the different water conditions:  get mileage on the water;  and paddle smart.

If you could meet one person in the world (alive or deceased), who would it be? Barry White  - he has charisma!!! 

Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign? I like to say thank you to my husband Tame who is my best fan for all his support and patience.

 




V1 Open Women


Marianna Hodges
Age: 33
Club: Porirua Canoe Kayak Club
Where did you grow up: Porirua
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How did you get into paddling and how long have you been paddling for? My Dad and Mum play a big part in our community growing up, our club was established in 1984 and Whitewater Slalom was our life. Our club thrives off most water canoe sports and I was introduced to waka ama from my dad when I was 10. Waka ama has been a part of my life ever since.

Where do you usually sit in the waka and what do you like about that seat? I sit anywhere, every seat is unique and plays really important roles. My favourite seat at the moment especially during our ocean season is Steering.

What is your favourite long distance race in the world and why? Te Aito. I always love going back to Tahiti. The Tahitians are beautiful and I feel like I’m around people who love and connect with va’a like me. I would love to do the Molokai solo one year too.

What would be your number 1 race tip be for a first time long distance paddler? Don’t rush to be the best. Basics are what get you through. Learn about your own ocean playground, learn about the good winds the tough winds. Find your connection and understanding with your own backyard. I'm still learning something new every session. Go out with paddlers you trust and learn off eachother. Don’t forget to pass that on to our future paddlers.

Is there anyone you would like to thank who has supported you during this campaign?
My family of course, my supportive partner Pa and son Hawaiki. My club PCKC with my training squad the bro Turi Hodges. My very first sponsors from Tahiti Fai va’a and Viper paddles. Thank you for this opportunity Waka ama NZ we hope to represent with Pride.

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