Kaimai School pupils got a taste for Olympic gold when gold medal rower Gary Robertson visited on Thursday.
Principal Dane Robertson, Gary’s son and a former member of the national under-23 lightweight four himself, says the school’s 80 pupils enjoyed the visit by the member of the 1972 gold medal-winning eight.
Room 4 students get to have a close up encounter with an Olympic gold medal.
The family involvement in rowing – which stretches back to Gary’s uncle Rusty Robertson, who was coach for the medal-winning eight, has seen another family rower earn a gold in the past week with Gary’s son-in-law Eric Murray.
While Gary is pleased with Eric’s success he doesn’t envy today’s rowers for the intensity of training they have to go through.
“We had to train a lot, but the intensity of training these guys need to do is something else.”
Gary encouraged the students to have fun playing sport and to always give it their best shot.
Dane says the children all enjoyed the experience of wearing the medal and asking Gary questions – including where he keeps the medal, why medals were only given to the first three places, if he had ever fallen out of his boat and if it is made of gold.
They are already preparing questions for their next rowing gold medallist, with Eric promised he will visit the school soon.
Jack Robertson holds his grandfather’s gold medal with his father, principal Dane Robertson.