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Rowing to Glory for New Zealand

 Finn Howard is a promising rower who grew up in Bayswater and went to local schools; Devonport Primary, Belmont Intermediate and then Westlake Boys High School. Finn started his rowing career in his first year at Westlake and has continued ever since. He’s part of the North Shore Rowing Club and did one season rowing at club level, winning two national titles. He then went on to row in the Auckland Regional team (RPC) which then got him into the New Zealand team. In 2013, he was part of the U23 Men's eight that won Gold at the U23 World Rowing Championships in Austria. Channel Magazine put a few questions to Finn about his rowing success and what the future looks like.

Courtney Bennett: How did you get involved in rowing?
Finn Howard:
My older brother rowed at Westlake Boys so I was always taken to all the regattas with Mum.  I was keen to give it a go once I started at Westlake. 

CB: You won an AIMES Award, how did that help you further your career?
The AIMES Award helped a huge amount. Being under 23, we had to pay our way to get to the World Championships in Italy. So the award went a long way in helping me get to the World Champs.

CB: You were born in England, who do you support in the Rugby?
Definitely the All Blacks! I was only born in England, but grew up here.

CB: What’s the best part about rowing in a team? (Finn is in the Men’s Eight.)
The best thing is definitely having eight team members to work with. There is always a huge sense of team work and moving forward together that is pretty unstoppable. Our crew has been together for just over two years now so we are all really good mates. That makes everything a lot easier I think. A lot of trust is needed in a fast eight.

CB: What’s the best thing about representing your country?
Knowing that you are representing your country. You don’t often step back to realise the achievement because we train so hard leading into the events. It hits home when you make it onto the podium and hear the national anthem though.

CB: What do you do in your spare time?
Just like to catch up on things that I don't have time to do when I'm training.

CB: Favourite sport to watch live?
Always enjoy a good rugby game to watch. But whenever the Olympics is on I always enjoy watching any of that. My girlfriend is heavily involved with BMX so that’s always exciting to watch.

CB: Favourite rower and why?
Sir Steve Redgrave...Five Olympic Gold medals for Great Britain, can’t really argue with that.

CB: In 10 years time, I’ll be…
Sitting here with a couple of Olympic medals around my neck. 

by Courtney Bennett