WHEN Caelan Baldwin rows his boat, it's never gently down the stream.
The Forest Lake State High School student powered through the water last month, to win gold at the Queensland School Canoe Marathon Championships.
The annual event attracts elite competitors from high schools across Queensland.
Mr Baldwin paddled his way to victory in the under-16 boys 6km TK1 (touring kayak).
The Year 11 student said it was a shock to win, as he had only trained in that particular type of boat less than a dozen times.
"I was doing white water kayaking for about two years before I moved up here from Sydney," he said.
"It felt very different making the transition to this new style of kayaking.
"At first I wasn't used to the stability of the boat because they are built very thin, which made it harder to balance.
"But after a while I got used to it and then worked on my speed.
"I didn't expect to win though, as I was up against competitors who had been training in that type of kayaking for years."
Unsure where his talent in the sport would take him, Mr Baldwin said he enjoyed the different forms of paddling and was eager to compete in future competitions.
Mr Baldwin also won the junior under-16 state competition alongside his younger brother Rohan at the Queensland Canoe Polo Championships in April.