At the end of 1997, the school decided to enter into a sporting competition with the seven other state boys schools in the Central North Island: Gisborne Boys’, Rotorua Boys’, Napier Boys’, Palmerston North Boys’, Tauranga Boys’, New Plymouth Boys’ and Hastings Boys’.
The rationale behind the move was to provide boys at HBHS with strong regular sporting competition that was often not obtainable in the local competition. The other seven schools experienced similar frustrations in their own regions and so the Canterbury sponsored initiative was born.
Rugby and cricket were the two sports initially involved, but today the competition embraces many winter and summer codes. Hockey, rugby and basketball play over a whole season, commuting between the various centres in the same way the Super 15 Professional Rugby teams travel. The other codes – and they now include soccer, cricket, tennis, volleyball, softball, golf, and badminton – participate in “one-off” tournaments which are held at all different times of the year.
A welcome addition in 2000 was the Super 8 Cultural Festival. This festival includes a Kapa Haka competition, Drama, Debating, Theatresports and a Music competition. HBHS hosted this festival in 2002. The festival was deemed an outstanding success in terms of the school’s achievements and as an opportunity to showcase the talents of all eight of the Super Eight Schools.
HBHS has met with a great deal of success within the Super Eight Competition winning Soccer, Softball, Golf, Drama, Hockey and Debating among others since the inception of the Super Eight and placing highly in many other codes.
The Super Eight lost the sponsorship of Canterbury Clothing in 2001 but the Super Eight Competition continues to flourish. The number of competitions and tournaments continues to grow, with more codes being added in 2002. HBHS values its place in this prestigious competition, as it allows our best sportsmen the opportunity to compete against comparable opponents, something the school is unable to experience on a regular basis within the Waikato. Competition within the Super 8 is fierce and our athletes have benefited greatly through involvement in this unique competition.