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The team, comprising George Dennison, Latham Jones, Reid Long, Logan Boyd and cox Henry Matthews, won by a convincing two boat-lengths on Friday, coach Andrew Jolly said.
The silver medal went to a Wellington crew and bronze to Avon Rowing Club. The crew had ''absorbed all the pressure'' of racing in a men's class, Jolly said.
It is Wakatipu Rowing Club's first gold medal at the New Zealand championships in more than 10 years and Mr Jolly said school-age crews usually only race in school events.
''The crew now sets its sights to the New Zealand Secondary Schools champs in four weeks in Cambridge.''
A second novice crew from Wakatipu missed a spot in the final.
The Wakatipu men's novice eight consisting of the above four along with Ben Luke, Will Saxon, Josh Tell and Oliver Jolly came
fifth in the eight final, as did the double scull pair of Michael Foley and Willian van der Kaag in their race.
Novice double scull pair Oliver Jolly and Will Saxon placed 13th in their final.